This post is a little off the beaten track, but this is I’ve Tried That and I am trying something new. But first, I have a confession.
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I hate winter.
I don’t do winter. The cold. The snow. The constant gray skies. Gah, I want no parts of it. So much so, that I spent an entire day last month planning to move to Australia for the next few months. I looked into plane tickets, dual citizenship and even picked out some nice looking real estate near a beach.
Pipe dreams of course, but man do I hate winter. It doesn’t help that I live in Pittsburgh either. It snows often and the overcast is relentless. I wish I could hibernate to be quite honest.
The mornings are the worst. My bed is fitted with a heated mattress cover and an incredibly heavy down comforter. It’s my own little cocoon that I try to spend as much time in as possible. As you can imagine, getting out of bed each morning is quite the struggle and I wanted a solution.
A few weeks ago I was reading an article on light therapy and how you can use certain lights to simulate sunlight and improve your mood. These lights are widely used to help treat Seasonal Affective Disorder and help regulate sleeping patterns. The article had briefly mentioned “wake up lights” and how they can be effective in helping people wake up in the morning.
Basically, there are alarm clocks which feature bright lights to help ease the wake-up process. The alarm clocks gradually get brighter as they near your set alarm time effectively simulating a sunrise. Your alarm goes off and you wake up to a fully lit bedroom and an energized body.
This piqued my interest since I refuse to do winter and I set out to try one of these wake-up lights. If there’s a light out there that could help me deal with winter mornings, I am going to use it.
Enter the Philips HF3470 Wake-up Light
I started shopping around, comparing different models, and reading customer reviews. The model I ultimately settled on is a Philips HF3470 Wake-up Light.
It is an alarm clock. You set a time for an alarm to go off; however, about 30 minutes before the alarm sounds, the light kicks on and gradually gets brighter. It reaches its full brightness just as your alarm sounds. You have three options to wake up to: music, chirping birds, or a more traditional, albeit less annoying, alarm tone. Your body is subconsciously adjusting to “rising sun” providing you with a much better wake up experience.
I chose this model largely due to the reviews and the price. One feature that really stood out was the user replaceable light bulb. A lot of other models required you to send the alarm clock in to replace the bulb if it ever burnt out. That sounded completely unacceptable. It’s changing a light bulb for crying out loud. I shouldn’t have to send the alarm clock away to change a bulb. The fact that I could service this model myself sealed the deal for me.
I placed my order and said goodbye to my old alarm clock. That night, I went to bed skeptical, but woke up energized. It was quite amazing. I didn’t have to struggle to get out of bed or bargain with the clock for more time. The birds chirped, I woke up to a completely lit room, and I sat up ready to go.
It’s just such a better and more pleasant way to wake up each morning. My typical morning used to consist of a god awful high-pitched beeping to scare the hell out of me in hopes of waking up. This usually followed by at least 45 minutes of pressing the snooze button and hearing the siren go off every five minutes. After I finally convinced myself to get out of bed, I’d plod my way over to the coffee pot and contemplate going back to sleep for a few more hours. It was a struggle each and every morning.
Now my wake up process is awesome. I wake up to a fully light room and birds chirping. My eyes pop right open and I’m able to get out of bed without having to feign sleep for nearly an hour. I still make my way to the coffee pot, but with a spring in my step and a song in my heart.
Okay, that’s a bit much.
But in all honesty, I feel much more awake when I use the wake-up light and have a much more positive mood throughout the day. You know that super heavy eyelid feeling you get each morning? Well, I haven’t felt that at all since using the wake-up light.
Winter mornings have finally become bearable.
The biggest downside is the price. I spent $90 on my Philips Wake up Light. That’s a tad expensive for an alarm clock. However, this is going to be something that I use on a daily basis for years to come. It helps me wake up better each morning, helps me focus on work easier, and has generally improved my mood. For me, it is well worth the price. I would gladly buy it again and am completely satisfied with my purchase.
If you’re like me and struggle with the mornings, I highly recommend trying out the Philips HF3470 Wake-Up Light. You can check it out at Amazon.com by clicking here. It comes with a 45-day money-back guarantee. If you try it and don’t see any results, return it! I started seeing results after my first night with it. This baby isn’t going anywhere. It might not be Australia for the winter, but it sure does help.