The annoying beeping sound jolted Kojo out of his four-hour long sleep. Grudgingly, he climbed out of his bed to start his busy working day. I know most of us can relate to Kojo’s experience. For those who cannot, I am sure you have come across the annoying little device that wakes you up at a particular time though you set it.

Trusting yourself (your body) to wake up in time after a hard day’s work is a huge blunder one cannot afford to commit and definitely not a very good excuse to give your boss. People have attested to the fact that their alarms helped them wake up in time to plan their day or helped them wake up in time to finish their work before a deadline. Relying on a spouse, friend or colleague to wake you up may leave you disappointed. Undeniably, the ‘tick’ ‘tock’ sound of your alarm clock is the most reliable way to go.  

Some of us, who see the alarm clock as a killjoy, end its annoying cry with a tap of a button. Studies have shown that alarm clocks startle, warn or shock us into wakefulness, which is not helpful for our health and people who are predisposed to heart diseases are more vulnerable in the early mornings. A sudden jolt out of a deep sleep puts stress on the heart and triggers the body’s flight response. Even for those who are unconcerned about heart problems, being suddenly awakened by the tone of an alarm clock can have a negative impact on how they function during the day. It comes as no surprise that some people comfortably refer to it as the ‘alarm monster’.

Considering such effects the alarm clock is likely to have on us, it is definite that we should abandon the alarm clock for our own good. But how do I wake up in time to get to work and other appointments? For some of us who have a very rocky relationship with the ‘alarm monster,’ here are some few tips to help with its existence in our lives.

Imagine waking up to the sound of your favourite song playing instead of the shrill tone of your alarm. Change your alarm tone to your favourite song, be it classical, dancehall or blues. This is to dispel the sudden reaction the alarm has on us, especially our minds. Waking up to something more pleasant is definitely better and surely motivates you for the day.

Invest in an alarm clock with extra features to suit you: for example, there is an alarm clock with a growing volume that starts out low and gets louder over time, so you can wake up more gently. This dispels the notion that deep sleepers might not wake up to the sound of their favourite song playing. Truly deep sleepers may opt for an alarm clock that also vibrates, because bed shaking might be a more reliable wake-up call. If your room is very dark and you would like to gently ease into your morning, consider getting an alarm clock that doubles as a light: Around wake up time, it turns on dim and slowly gets brighter as it gets closer to your wake up time so you can’t ignore it.

We might as well see the alarm clock as a necessary evil, but we can actually change its position from being a foe to a friend in our lives. I am really looking forward to waking up to the sound of ‘Halleluyah Eh” by Nathaniel Bassey!



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