The Search for the Perfect Morning Alarm (does it have to be that difficult?)
I am an extreme morning person who sleeps with an insomniac night owl. ¬†I’m usually getting up just after my best beloved fallen asleep, and I go to bed ¬†just as he’s recovering and catching his second wind after a long day at work. To say this adds challenge to our marriage is an understatement.
For me, I tend to bounce out of bed between 4 and 4:30 with my head already four hours ahead in planning my day. ¬†I don’t need coffee.
My best beloved, on the other hand, fights with himself to get up at 7 so he can get on the treadmill or outside for a walk before going to work. Chances are he hasn’t slept all night – or he’s at least missed significant chunks of sleep – and he’s not really ready for clear thought until about 9:30 after his second cup of coffee at work. Frankly, I don’t understand how he can function at all.
Because of this I’ve struggled to find an alarm that will wake me predictably in the wee hours, while not disturbing my husband. I also need it to wake me properly – no screaming buzzer, no incessant beeping, no air raid – nothing to create early morning panic that leads to a bad mood. ¬†I need something soothing, gentle, and inspiring. Also, anything that vibrates to wake me (my phone, tablet, or Samsung Gear Fit) also wake Tom, so that’s not an option.
This has been a bit of a challenge, but I almost have it worked out.
First I got an iPod Touch, and then later I had an iPhone. ¬†This allowed me a greater selection in my alarm styles. I would wear earphones to bed and hope they were still in place when the alarm went off. ¬†My next great find were Sleepphones (gotta love the tagline “Pajamas for Your Ears”) which allowed me to have an alarm go off without my husband hearing. ¬†I started with the Sleepphones Classic, the version that has a cable that plugs into your phone. ¬†However, after several strangulation attempts and the resulting necessary replacement of two jack plugs at the end of the cable due to them having been pulled off (did I mention I was an active sleeper?) my husband upgraded me to the wireless ones. So far so good, but because it’s me, I have to keep pushing…
Not long ago I finally invested in “Holosync“, something I’ve had my eye on for a long time. ¬†I’m fascinated by brain technology and have used other brainwave entrainment recordings, but Holosync is the cr√®me de la cr√®me. ¬†The idea here is you listen to one specific recording daily for 14 days, and then add a second recording to that, and you listen to that daily for the rest of your life. There are lots of upgrades and such, but that’s the gist. Not too complicated. However, the two tracks together take an hour, so to avoid having to find yet another hour in my day that I’m not doing anything, I choose to have my alarm go off an hour earlier than necessary and complete these two tracks before I get up. As the tracks are a form of deep meditation, I don’t worry about losing another hour of sleep.
But the trick here is how to set it up..
I’ve tried several different alarm aps now, and still no luck.
Some alarms allow you to choose a playlist to wake up to. ¬†This is ideal, and rare. ¬†Those that I’ve tried that allow this tend to only play the first song. Why? What’s the point in setting up a playlist if the alarm only plays the first song?
Some play only tracks that you’ve downloaded onto your device. ¬†I downloaded the tracks (there are actually three I use because the third one brings you into a state of wakefulness automatically). Did the math, and set the three tracks up as three different alarms set to go off one after the other with the next track. ¬†Simple, right? Nope. ¬†For some reason the alarm app won’t play the whole track, and then I’m jarred awake ¬†– too early even by my standards – by silence in the middle of a soothing track of nature sounds and gentle gongs.
Then, to complicate things even further, Holosync has a series of tracks you can play before you go to sleep that lull you into a deep sleep. ¬†These are lovely, soothing tracks, and they work really well for falling asleep quickly. These are easy to set up – turn on the playlist before I go to sleep. ¬†Done. Love that.
But something weird happens. ¬†After my alarms all go off in the morning – badly – ¬†this nighttime track starts all over again of its own volition. Why? In fact this morning I came down to the kitchen, left my tablet on the table (my phone is defunct) and started writing this blog. ¬†suddenly there’s this weird “wooshing” noise going on, and I realize my tablet has just turned itself on and is playing the nighttime track at full volume while everyone’s sleeping. Why?
It is odd to me that in this age of crazy, automated technology, I can’t find a simple alarm app that plays my whole playlist, all three songs all the way through, and then shuts up.
Perhaps I’m the only person on the planet who is looking for such automation, but I doubt it.
Hold on, that’s my tablet turning itself on AGAIN, and playing the nighttime track AGAIN!
I’d give up, but stubborness is an integral part of my nature. As I used to say to my beloved daughter, “The winner of this fight has already been decided. ¬†That’s me. ¬†All you get to decide is how long the battle lasts.” ¬†I think I’m in for the long haul.
|Be A Star!
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