As a child I learned that an alarm clock was used to wake you up. But it took me a lot longer to realise that an alarm clock was a tool to send you to sleep and sleep more.
By sleeping more, I don’t mean hammering the snooze button every nine minutes to have half an hour longer in bed. With a blurring of home and office (and working from home for the last year and a half), I have found that my “down time” from work has become less, particularly where I have taken time out to pick up children from kindergarten, do some shopping, cook etc. And so this was where the alarm clock came in.
I set alarms for 21:30 and 22:00, which were the soft and hard cut-off points, past which I could not work. And then thirty minutes later (ie 22:30) to indicate time to sleep. Between the soft/hard alarms I would only finish a task I was working on, but not start new tasks.
In addition, I have also set social media apps to be blocked past 22:30, and my phones to go into do not disturb mode. All of these steps have helped me to sleep better, making the being woken up at 05:00 – 06:00 by the twins a little more manageable, even if their alarm to do so is daily, rather than just limited to the working week.