How To Start A New Sleep Schedule
When I got my first job after college, I had a hard time adjusting to an early wake-up hour.
Long gone were the days of sleeping till 3 PM after a late night of browsing Reddit and playing video games with roommates.
The problem was that my brain was still living in the past, which means it was super hard for me to go to bed at a reasonable time...
and even harder to wake up at 7 AM!
So I spent a few months researching how to fix my sleeping problems. It was that or losing my very first job!
That's how I found out about sleep schedules. And I'm going to show you how to start yours.
Thanks to my new sleep schedule my own body starts turning off as soon as 10 PM, and I manage to wake up right before my phone alarm rings (I don't need anymore it but I still like to set it up as a backup!)
How to establish a new sleep schedule
First, choose your times
Having a regular sleep schedule just means waking up and going to bed at the same times every day (yes, that includes weekends, you're gonna have to make some sacrifices...).
So we naturally start by choosing those two times.
Just work out when you need to wake up, then go back about 8 hours (pretty standard but you can play with this number a bit).
That’s it, simple as that.
Second, set up your alarms
You are going to set two alarms up. But not both in the morning! That is a bad habit that will encourage you to oversleep.
You are going to set one up in the morning, for waking up, and the other one at night, to remind you to go to bed.
Don't skip this step, your brain is gonna try to trick you to go back to your old habits… Don’t let it do it if you wanna take control of your life!
The alarms will confuse your previous patterns and help you get used to your new schedule. That is, only if you do the next step…
Third, honor your schedule
You're going to need to rely on willpower at the beginning... but don't worry, your habit-forming powers will kick in pretty soon!
You just need to be super protective of your new schedule!
When the alarm goes off in the morning, you wake up instantly, no matter how "tired" you are.
When the alarm goes off at night you go to bed, no matter how exciting the new series you are binge-watching on Netflix is.
Do this consistently and your brain and your body will get used to your new, regular schedule before you can even notice it.
Troubleshooting (a couple hacks)
I know it's easier said than done, so if you have any trouble waking up or going to sleep, these two extra hacks have helped me immensely:
For waking up automatically - As soon as you wake up get some sunshine on your eyes.
I don't mean to look directly at the sun, that would be bad! But make sure to have some direct sun exposure, for just 5 or 10 minutes.
This will kick your system into gear instantly!
For going to sleep quicker - There are multiple tips and tricks for this, but what I've found works best for me is a weighted blanket.
I don't know why exactly, but when I use one I fall asleep in less than 5 minutes.
I never considered myself an anxious person, but I used to spend hours turning on my bed before I fell asleep. Not anymore.
If you wanna try it, this is the one I used: https://gravid.ca/products/weighted-blanket
And that's all, master your sleep with a sleep schedule and use these two hacks to keep it going forever. Go ahead and get your life in order, you can thank me later!