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Pro Tip: Set iPhone Alarm Labels to Pep Talk Yourself Out of Bed

Change iPhone alarm label/disable iphone snoozeEvery night, I make these ambitious goals to wake up early, seize the day and punch out before 5PM. But by the time 5AM rolls around and my iPhone alarm is buzzing and glowing like a demented lightning demon caught in the groggy web of predawn darkness, I can never quite remember why I was so pumped about getting up before the sun.  Snooze… and then it’s 10AM and I hate myself. As I prepare my mid-morning brunch of shame, I always vow that “Tomorrow!” will be the diem that I finally carpe.

To this day, my batting average is still something like .143. So, after finally getting fed up with working until 11PM every night, I decided to try out a simple lifeHack that will help me defeat Sleepy Carl once and for all. If you’ve got an iPhone, you can beat him, too. Here’s how:

Setting a Label for Your iPhone Alarm

By default, when you set your iPhone alarm, the alarm goes off and displays the word “Alarm” along with that oh-so-tempting Snooze button. But did you know that you can change that text? You can. The intention is that you can switch it to some sort of meaningful reminder, such as “Take red pill” or “Remove space prisoners from hyper dungeon.” For me, I use it to remind myself of the benefits of dragging my lazy self out of bed.

It reads:

Wake up! Start work early and quit by 5PM!”

pep talk iphone alarm label

That way, when Sleepy Carl’s all, “Why would you get up and work? Stay here, where you’re the owner of the restaurant from Happy Days and all of your customers are Harlem Globetrotters!” you can have your iPhone there providing a counterpoint based on reality.

Step 1

From your iPhone home screen, Touch the Clock app.

change iphone alarm text

Step 2

Touch the + button to add a new alarm, or Touch Edit and choose an existing alarm to change its alarm label.

iphone alarm text custom

Step 3

Touch the Label setting. It’s the last option.

customize iphone alarm

Step 4

Type in your morning pep talk. It can be up to 70 characters. When you’re done, make sure you Touch Save.

customize iphone alarm

Step 5

Now, when your alarm goes off, take half a second and read the message you wrote to your future sleepy self.

how many characters can you have in your iphone alarm label?

Disabling the iPhone Alarm Snooze Button

I know that the Snooze button is supposed to be an effective weapon against Sleepy Carl, but personally, I hate it on the iPhone. More often than not, I end up hitting it on accident instead of actually disabling my alarm. Then, when I’m in the shower, the alarm goes off again, waking up the whole house. So, while we’re setting up a morning pep talk, we may as well go over how to turn off the snooze button on the iPhone.

All you have to do is go back to the Edit Alarm screen that we were at in Step 2. The Snooze toggle is the third option from the top. Switch it to Off.

how to turn off snooze in ios

Now, the only way to turn off the alarm is to Slide, as if you’re unlocking. For me, this is actually more effective at waking me up, because I have to either put on my glasses or hold the phone right up to my face in order to see it well enough to slide the alarm off (yes, my vision is that bad).

no snooze ios button

So, there you have it. If you’ve disabled your snooze button and added a pep talk to your iPhone alarm and still can’t drag yourself away from Lord Hypnos, then you should either consult a doctor about your inordinate sleepiness or consider putting your phone on the other side of the room so you have to physically get out of bed to turn off the alarm.  Rise and shine, groovyReaders!

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7 Responses to Pro Tip: Set iPhone Alarm Labels to Pep Talk Yourself Out of Bed

  1. Nikky June 19, 2011 at 5:34 pm #

    Haha! Everything you say is so true! I somehow need to get myself to bed earlier so I don’t wake up so tired. Will def give these two a go but have a feeling I will have to put my phone across the room because it is so cold in the mornings!

  2. Nick July 13, 2011 at 6:19 am #

    Now here’s a slightly different problem. After using alarm for years I turned it off, but it continues to ring as if it were on. Any advice? It says off.

  3. karen August 16, 2011 at 7:18 pm #

    but why only 70 characters all of a sudden, i used to have entire letters typed in there and then all of a sudden my great inspirational confessions are cut off after the first I guess 70 characters, I thought the phone was defective..uggh, i’m longwinded

  4. Dan Sullivan August 22, 2012 at 6:54 pm #

    I want one that’ll smack me in the face with giant text that I won’t overlook (read: ignore) in the blurry morning.

    • Steve Krause August 22, 2012 at 10:09 pm #

      There’s an App for that. It’s called, put the alarm on your wife’s side of the bed and make it a really annoying buzz. She will wake up and slap you around for sure.

      Works every time!

      • Bogdan Bele August 22, 2012 at 11:37 pm #

        I get the slap no matter which side of the bed it’s on :))

  5. JadeStarrz July 27, 2013 at 3:01 pm #

    Thanks a ton for this! I have to set alarms for meals and such, remembering which alarm is for what is now a breeze.

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