Can This Odd Device Help You Gain An Extra Week?

What if you had an extra 40 hours this year to work on whatever you wanted? Maybe you could learn a new skill or move a pet project closer to completion.

I’m going to tell you about an odd device that has the power to give you that extra 40 hours.

But first, let me ask you a question.

Are You One Of Them, Or One of Me?

Are you a “morning person,” someone who jumps out of bed in the morning with a smile on their face? Do you get up early to take a brisk walk, stopping to smell every flower as friendly blue birds chirp from a their perch on your shoulder?

Or, are you like me? BEEP – BEEP – BEEP! The alarm goes off like a shotgun targeting your soul. You instinctively hit the snooze button and roll over for “one more minute” of sleep. Eventually, you accept the realization that you must get out of bed. Now you’ll have to rush out the door because you’ve slept too long.

Hopefully, you don’t forget anything important, like your laptop, phone, or kids.

If you are not a morning person, this device I’m talking about could change your life. But let’s do some quick math so you get a better understanding of what I’m talking about.

How To Gain An Extra Week of Time This Year

Little things add up. Let’s assume you work 48 weeks out of the year. If you get up 10 minutes earlier each workday, you’ll have gained 40 extra hours by the end of the year. That’s an entire workweek of time.

But waking up, and that damn snooze button, is the big obstacle between you and that extra week.

We’re Waking Up Wrong

Alarm clocks are meant to jolt you out of bed with either a series of annoying beeps or loud music. Plus, they have the best and worst feature ever invented…the snooze button!

But if you’ve ever been camping (like in a tent) you know it’s hard to sleep till 11am out in the woods. You have the sun coming through your tent and nature’s sounds (like birds chirping or bears mauling your friends) waking you up pretty early.

That’s the way our body was designed to wake up. And that’s where this odd device comes in.

A Better Alarm Clock

I threw away my alarm clock. And for the past month, I’ve been using Phillips’s Wake Up Light.

Basically, it’s this big, wierd-looking lamp that sits by your bed. Starting a half hour before your wake up time, it slowly starts shooting what amounts to sun rays at you. Over the next half hour, the sun rays slowely intensify. It is meant to simulate the sunrise. When your wake up time comes, it starts soft bird chirping sounds. These gradually get louder, but never alarm clock annoying loud.

It usually wakes me up just before the birds start chirping. It’s wierd and hard to explain. But for the last month, it has helped me wake up early. My eyes aren’t groggy (i.e. no sand). And I don’t feel a need to hit a snooze button (the snooze only turns off the chirping, not the light anyway).

It even worked when we stayed up late to see a reunited Neutral Milk Hotel and I had to get up early the next morning for a client meeting.

Artificial Sunlight

Phillips says the special light contains no UV rays and is safe to use every day. But I will say it does feel to me like sunlight. This is not something I would use as a regular light. It feels weird if you sit next to it when it is on, like you are going to get a sunburn.

They also claim this artificial sunlight gives you energy. I can’t substantiate that claim, but I guess it’s reasonable to believe.

According to their marketing material (which you should always take with a grain of salt), “Independent research shows that 8 out of 10 Wake-Up Light users reported that the device made it easier to get out of bed.”

The Cons

I’m not sure there are any cons. But I will say that it doesn’t work the same for my wife, who sleeps on the other side of the bed. I think the Wake-Up Light has to be right next to you to truly work its magic.

But my wife did stop using her alarm clock. I’m her alarm clock now.

Get Your Extra 40 Hours

I wouldn’t post about a product here on unless I thought it was a game changer and I had personal experience with it. For us non-morning person, the Wake-Up Light is a game changer if you want to wake up earlier and easier.

If you are a morning person, I’m not sure the cost/benefit of the Wake-Up Light is there for you. Plus, getting up 10 minutes earlier would have to coincide with going to bed 10 minutes earlier for morning people. That’s because they are already getting up early.

Anyway, you can buy the Wake-Up Light on Amazon. I also put a link on my resources page.

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  1. Wow. I used the first generation lamp by Phillips many years ago and it made a big difference. I woke up more rested and calmer than when I was using a regular alarm clock. I was having more and more trouble waking when working long hours, and bought bigger and louder alarm clocks to solve being unable to wake. They just made me jumpy. This technology solved my problem. Here’s another tip. If you live in a city, be sure to darken the room when you go to sleep. We were losing sleep when we moved into the city and the outside lamps didn’t let us sleep as soundly as when we were in the country and it was pitch black outside at night.

    • Matt Handal says


      Thank you for commenting. That’s a good tip. Once we bought our new house, we put up special blackout curtains to stop the light.

      I also had the same experience you did with other alarms.

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