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5 ways to use behavior design for calmer mornings

In this article series called "5 times 5", we will explore some basics around gamification, nudging & behavioural design.

Behavior design means trying to solve a challenge (in this case to get out of bed earlier to get calmer mornings) by understanding your emotions and psychological attitudes, how they correlate to your ability to face the challenge and what positive effects it may have if you succeed and what biases that might stop you from acting in a way that actually benefits you. You can also use tools and triggers to get you motivated to change your behavior. Piece of cake, right?


1. Psychological factors: Know your strengths and weaknesses
A notorious snoozer? Make sure to place the alarm device so far from the bed that you have to get out of bed to turn it off. Now when you are already out of bed, make sure to spend the time well.

2. Tools: The evil alarm clock
If you really need a jolt to get out of bed, there are several alarm apps that give you some help on the way. There is app's alarm that only stops ringing once you've taken a photo that matches one you've already registered, and there are other apps that force you to solve a puzzle or play a game before shutting up. By that time, you will be ready and out of bed!

3. Emotions: Plan your experience
Ok, now you are awake - make sure that it is a as pleasant experience as possible, so you are motivated to do again the next day. Have the coffee machine loaded and ready to just press the button and decide what you want to do with your extra time. If it is more time to eat breakfast, make sure to fill your fridge with things you really would like to eat, if it is some time to get ahead and plan the day, make a list the night before and put next to your favourite coffee mug and if it is time for yoga or exercise, have your clothes and nice playlist ready to go.

4. Ability to improve: Evaluate
Give yourself at least a weak with your new habits before you evaluate. Are you feeling calmer? How is your energy before lunch when having a proper breakfast? Does fresh air before work makes you more awake?

5. Biases: Use numbers to stay motivated
Do you constantly underestimate the time you can earn by getting up a bit earlier? It’s a phenomenon and is called time-saving-bias. Count the extra time you get by getting out of bed a bit earlier and turn it into numbers every week, like 2,5 extra hours for exercise, 1-hour work to flex out in the afternoon and so on.



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