The Recovering Pessimist

Helping pessimists see the bright side of life without losing their "half empty" roots.

Why I Use the Sleep Better App by Runtastic


Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post. The Sleep Better app was purchased with my money. All opinions are my own.

I don’t sleep well at night during the work week. When the alarm went off, I was very groggy and cranky. I felt rushed while I was getting ready for work. I finally reached my breaking point when a night of restlessness resulted in less than three hours of sleep.

Not good.

I did some research on sleep tracking apps. Many of them had free options which weren’t usable. Others were entirely too complicated to use even in the free version.

Then I discovered the Sleep Better sleep cycle alarm clock app on Google Play (also available on the App Store). The free option is sufficient but I wanted access to my sleep diary and wanted to have the ability to change the Wake Up Window for the Smart Alarm.

Here are a few of my favorite things about the Sleep Better app:


Signing Up/Log In

Sleep Better App Login

One of my biggest gripes about apps is that many give you options to sign up/log in via Facebook, Twitter, or email. Thankfully, the Sleep Better app gives you two options for signing up/logging in: Facebook and Google. I chose Google because Google is life. If I can avoid having to use an email address and password to sign up/log in, I’m here for it.

It’s the small things.



Home Screen

Sleep Better App Alarm Menu

At the top of the home screen is your alarm time. You can scroll through the hour and minutes to create your alarm time. Directly underneath it is the Wake Up Window, which you set from the alarm menu.

Below the Wake Up Window are six options that might affect your sleep:

Worked Out, Stressful Day, Not My Bed, Ate Late, Caffeine, and Alcohol

At the bottom of the home screen is the Start button, which you select when you’re ready to fall asleep.




Alarm Menu

Sleep Better Alarm SettingsOn the top right of the home screen menu is an alarm clock. Select the clock on the top right of the screen to get access to the alarm menu. At the top of the menu you can swipe right to turn the alarm on or swipe left to turn it off.

You can control the volume of the alarm and choose to have the phone vibrate when it goes off.

The Smart Alarm is the dopest part of the app. It allows you to set the time frame for within your set alarm time so you wake up in your lightest sleep stage. In the paid version there’s a default smart alarm setting of 30 minutes. The smart alarm for the paid version ranges from off to 45 minutes.

The downside of the alarm menu is that you can only create one alarm. This pertains to both the free and paid versions.

The alarm snooze option ranges from off to 20 minutes. Also, Alarm Sound features all the sounds for you to wake up to. The free version as a limited selection of sounds and in the paid version, all the sounds are unlocked.


Sleep Diary

Sleep Better Sleep DiaryThe Sleep Diary is a feature of the paid version. The diary is broken down by month. At the top of each month are the total nights of sleep and the monthly sleep average.

Each night of sleep in the diary shows the time the Start button was selected to start the app, the total time of sleep, and the sleep efficiency percentage.

Even with the app, I’ve only been able to get eight hours of sleep one time.

insert loud sigh here




Sleep Statistics

Sleep Better App Sleep Statistics

The paid version of the app has a section for sleep statistics which are broken down into four categories: overall, yearly, monthly, and weekly. This is a cool feature if you like to see your progress over time.








The only thing I don’t like about the app is that you can only set one alarm at a time. This goes for both the free and paid versions. Other than that, I have nothing bad to say about it.

To sum it up, the free version of the Sleep Better app is great on its own. However, if you want to view statistics, unlock alarm sounds, etc, it’s worth spending the $1.99 on. If you download and use the app, I’d like to read your thoughts on it.

Sweet dreams.

Updated March 31, 2017

Wisdom Wednesday #168


The Recovering Pessimist: Wisdom Wednesday #168 -- If you want something to happen, you have to be willing to not only show up, but do the necessary work. | #amwriting #recoveringpessimist #optimisticpessimist

My 5 Favorite Spotify Playlists for Sleep


The Recovering Pessimist: My Favorite Spotify Sleep Playlists -- I have moments where sleep eludes me. Listening to some of my favorite Spotify playlists usually relaxes me enough to fall asleep. | #amwriting #recoveringpessimist #optimisticpessimistI’m a creature of habit and my nighttime routine is no different. I stop using my computer 45 minutes to an hour before bed. I avoid drinking sugary drinks a few hours before bed. I turn off all the lights in my apartment.

Usually, this routine works like a charm.

Keyword: usually.

Some nights, despite my most valiant efforts, sleep still manages to elude me. On top of that, just one restless night ruins my sleep for the entire week. When I have those restless nights, I go to my favorite Spotify sleep playlists.


1. Sounds of Home | Noise Therapy

This playlist is full of white noise! Think along the lines of ventilation units, electrical appliances, fans, etc.

2. Gentle Rains

As a child, I would dance in the rain. It was so relaxing to feel the water against my skin. This playlist puts me in the perfect mood for a good night’s sleep.

3. Nightstorms

There’s something about night storms that make me want to cuddle up with a comfy blanket and a soft pillow. Thunder + nighttime are the perfect ingredients for a sound slumber.

4. Nature Noise

Living in the city, I miss the sounds of my country upbringing.  This playlist hits the spot.

5. Dreamcatcher

I found this collection of Native American flute music on a whim. It’s unique and soothing. Perfect for when it’s bedtime and your mind doesn’t get the memo.

These are my five favorite Spotify sleep playlists. Do you use sleep playlists? If so, please feel free to share in the comments.

Until next time,


Wisdom Wednesday #167


The Recovering Pessimist: Wisdom Wednesday #167 -- The days pass by quickly and it's easy to get wrapped up in what's happening next. Take time time to be present in the moment. Soak it in. | #amwriting #recoveringpessimist #optimisticpessimist

Photos #10WordStory



The Recovering Pessimist: Photos #10WordStory -- Memories laid across the floor, covered in shards of glass. | #amwriting #recoveringpessimist #optimisticpessimist #10wordstory

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The Recovering Pessimist: Wisdom Wednesday #166 -- A friendly reminder to not get caught up in other people's finances. What do your finances look like? Have you checked lately? | #amwriting #recoveringpessimist #optimisticpessimist

#Love is Necessary


The Recovering Pessimist: #Love is Necessary -- Each time I encountered Love, I emerged as a better person. Love helped me grow as a person. | #amwriting #recoveringpessimist #optimisticpessimist #mytruthaboutloveThere are two things that come to mind when I think of Love: Happiness and Heartache.

Happiness is an awesome feeling. It feels calming; like a glass of smooth whiskey or a comfy blanket on a chilly evening.

My experiences with heartache ranged from devastation to sad understanding. Heartache hurts, and while I don’t want to experience it, I know that it’s necessary.

Both happiness and heartache are necessary aspects of Love. They taught me lessons which made me a better person.

Love softens me. 

Love gives me hope.

Love humbled me.

I wouldn't be who I am without Love. Click To Tweet


Until next time,


Wisdom Wednesday #165


The Recovering Pessimist: Wisdom Wednesday #165 -- Take it little by little until you no longer feel overwhelmed. | #amwriting #recoveringpessimist #optimisticpessimist

#Love is Unexpected


The Recovering Pessimist: #Love is Unexpected -- It's been my experience that Love needs to come to me versus me looking for Love. I learned to appreciate the unexpectedness of Love, and I'm grateful for that. | #amwriting #optimisticpessimist #recoveringpessimist #mytruthaboutlove

While working on the Dear #Love Letter series and #Love: A Musical Retrospective, I realized that there was a recurring theme:

Love works on its own schedule.

You would think this be a “duh” moment, but like many things in my life, I had to figure this one out. I fought Love. I tried so hard to make Love work on my own terms. I planned for it. I did all the work required to invite Love in.

In return, Love laughed at me and delivered a well-needed life lesson:

What you want and what the Universe wants for you aren't going to line up all the time. Click To Tweet





When you know better, you do better right?

Until next time,





Wisdom Wednesday #164


The Recovering Pessimist: Wisdom Wednesday #164 -- Always be grateful for the ups, the downs, and the (sometimes painful) lessons learned. You lived through it and have an opportunity to do better. | #amwriting #recoveringpessimist #optimisticpessimist

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