How to Wake Up Refreshed: Maximize Your Sleep and Stop Hitting that Snooze Button

Are you the type who wakes up refreshed? You know the type. The rare person who jumps out of bed before the alarm clock sounds, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, ready for anything the day might bring? If so, this article isn't for you. This article is for the people who have to drag themselves out of bed every morning, usually after hitting snooze multiple times and are then forced to consume massive amounts of caffeine just to become semi-normal.

Your daily routine and your habits play a significant role in how you feel every day, both in the morning and for the rest of the day. If you wake up tired, there's a pretty good chance you're going to drag your sorry butt around for the entire day. The good news is, with a handful of changes, you can remake yourself into one of those people who wake rearing to get the day started and can learn to give the snooze button and your coffee pot a much-needed break.


Make Sure You're Getting Enough Sleep

Adults tend to vastly underestimate the amount of sleep they need every night. Most adults think they can get by on 5 or 6 hours of sleep per night, while some try to get by on even less. The key phrase here is "get by." You aren't getting the sleep you need if you're sleeping less than 7 hours a night. You're simply getting by, over time you'll build up something known as sleep deficit.

Sleep deficit is the amount of sleep you need every night minus the amount of sleep you actually get. If you need 8 hours sleep and you only get 5, you've built up a 3-hour sleep deficit. This effect is cumulative, so only getting 5 hours of sleep a night for a week could leave you with a sleep deficit of 21 hours.

If you're tired all the time, this could be the reason. Getting the 7 to 8 hours of sleep a night you need will go a long way toward ensuring you wake up refreshed.

Cut Out the Artificial Light

While the last bit of advice was more common sense than anything, here's something you may not already know. Research has shown that exposure to unnatural light in the evening before bed can impact the body's ability to produce melatonin, which is the hormone that controls your sleep cycles. This can impact your health in a number of ways, one of which is restlessness and poor sleeping patterns. If you don't sleep well at night, you're going to have a tough time waking up in the morning.

Turn off the television, shut down the computer and stay away from the iPad in the hours leading up to your bedtime. Alternatively, you can download a program known as f.lux, which is a free program that changes the color of your monitor at night and theoretically should help ease the effects of the monitor on melatonin production.

Drink a Glass of Water in the Morning

OK...So, you've managed to make it out of bed without killing anyone and have taken a shower, but still feel bleary-eyed. Instead of heading straight to the coffee maker, try drinking a large glass of water instead. Your body is made primarily of water and needs it to thrive. You'll feel better within moments.

Don't stop there. Continue drinking water throughout the day. Regular consumption of water helps the body produce serotonin, another hormone that regulates sleep.