#647 Alarms: Work-Down vs. Wake-Up

One’s (at Least!) 10x Better than the Other

Not too long ago, we chatted about Roger Federer, LeBron James and Tom Brady and how much those all-time greats prioritized sleep.

As you may recall, Brady goes to bed at 8:30 p.m. while Federer and James aim for 12 hours (!!!) of sleep per day so they can show up at their absolute best. (Wow.)

Today I want to chat about another great idea from Arianna Huffington’s great book The Sleep Revolution.

She tells us that the best hotels in the world are prioritizing helping their guests get a great night of sleep. One of them has something called a “work-down” call—which is basically the opposite of a “wake-up” call.

With the work-down call, you tell them what time you want to go to bed and they’ll call you an hour (or whatever) BEFORE that to let you know that if you plan to make your bedtime on time, you need to wrap things up.

How epic is THAT?

Let’s think about it for a moment. Which would you prefer? An alarm that WAKES YOU UP in the morning or an alarm that kicks off your night-time routine so YOU DON’T NEED an alarm in the morning?!

(btw: While you consider that question, here’s what our friendly sleep researcher James Maas says about alarms: “If you need an alarm clock to wake you up, if you find it hard to get out of bed in the morning, or if you’re tired during the day, you haven’t slept enough.”)

I don’t know about you, but as a guy who hasn’t used an alarm to get up for years (aside from the occasional travel day), I can’t even imagine using an adrenalin-producing alarm to get out of bed. (Arianna points out that even the *word* “alarm” has a terrible connotation.

(I just looked up the definition: “an anxious awareness of danger.” <- Yah. That’s an awesome way to start the day, eh? lol)

Good news: If you set a “work-down”/shut-down complete alarm this evening, you might not need a “wake-up” alarm tomorrow morning. That seems like a really solid trade. If you agree, what time shall we call you to make sure you’re shutting down tonight?

Here’s to Optimizing our sleep so we’ve got the joyful energy to give the world all we’ve got!

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