Ben Squires


8 tips for waking yourself up

8 tips for waking yourself up

We’ve all been there before: You’re on the couch mid-afternoon and your eyes begin to close but you’re supposed to be awake. Coffee and micro sleeps will only get you so far. If you’re want to last the distance until a more appropriate bedtime, here are some cheeky tricks to get you to the finish line.

When caffeine won’t cut it

So you’re three cups in for the day and nothing has worked so far? If you’re someone that would still reach for another cup, try putting less sugar and milk in than you normally would. The bitterness might just make you feel more awake.

Get some sunlight

Light passing through windows simply isn't the same as the real deal. Step outside for a moment for some revitalising vitamin D, breathe in the fresh, crisp air and let your senses awaken.

Splash cold water on your face

An oldie but a goodie, and proven to work. Exposure to sudden heat or cold, especially when involving sensitive areas (both your hands and your face are extremely so) will cause an immediate sympathetic reaction meant to startle you away from the possible threat.


Laughter can help wake up a sleepy person better than almost anything but sheer terror. So either find the funniest person in the room, or a funny video on Over60.

Pop a strong mint

If you're on the verge of narcolepsy, consider getting a menthol stick – they're so effective in tingling your sense that they even help actors fake tears.

Engage in social interaction with a complete stranger

Did we touch on sheer terror? This is something that nobody dwells on after the moment has passed, but our bodies tend to wake up pretty quickly to avoid any sort of social awkwardness. How many times have you laid up at night feeling anxious about something, unable to keep your eyes closed? This is finally a way to use that anxiety prone part of our biology to our advantage. If you're feeling dead on your feet, mention something about the weather to someone nearby.


Get out of that armchair that has been beckoning you into a resting state for the last forty-five minutes. Stretch out your back, neck and legs. Not just as if you’re yawning, but limber up as if you’re about to go for a run!

Bite a lemon

Whether you like the sour fruit or not, you can't deny the zesty slap to the face that it can provide in a time of need. 

Good luck!

Related links:

Expert tips to become a morning person

7 tips to beat insomnia

6 signs you need more sleep