We all know that sleep is the greatest form of self-care. A deep, eight-plus hours of restful sleep routinely can do wonders for your body. It will have you waking up energetic, blissful, and radiant. So, the question stands, why do we push the boundaries and indulge in sleep procrastination? Why do we stay well past the hour we give ourselves, despite the consequences?
Sleep Procrastination is a phenomenon where people unnecessarily delay going to bed, especially when they know that doing so is bad for them. A lot of it has to do with the influence of the modern-day work culture with little focus on leading a balanced life. We toil all day, dealing with the weight of expectations from ourselves and the people around us.
Even while working from home, you don’t really get the chance to enjoy your space and time during weekdays. At the end of a long workday, as you get into dinnertime, we feel the need to allocate several hours for ‘me’ time. For self-care, for hobbies, interests, and the chance to be straight-up unproductive.
The world we are a part of places such a high value on productivity, that it’s nearly impossible to take a break even for a couple of hours and still feel good about yourself. But as humans, we are designed to need rest and leisure. That can mean putting on a face mask, giving yourselves an at-home pedicure, bingeing a show, or testing out the new viral microwavable mug cake recipe.
But many of us take it too far. We know we need to rest. But in an act of rebellion, we fight off bedtime despite a non-negotiable morning alarm to get going all over again. We wake up tired, resenting our wake-up call and even the work we need to accomplish. We vow to get to bed earlier, but don’t hold ourselves accountable, thinking night playtime is too fun, too necessary.
Here are a few tips to help you understand how to get organized to prioritize sleep. These easy tips to stop sleep procrastination will help you plan your night-time routine better.
Be consistent with your bedtime
When you follow a consistent sleeping pattern, you’re able to sync your sleep with your internal body clock. This helps you fall asleep easier and wake up fresh in the morning. However not all of us can be this regimented when it comes to scheduling time to relax and time to sleep. What works best is if you stick to an 80/20 rule. This means that eighty percent of the time keep to consistent sleep patterns and routines, and the rest can be contingent on socializing, watching a show or just chilling out.
Make specific time for you
It’s important to take out allotted time to focus on yourself and your needs. Try and spend an hour before bed as a slow-down period. Use the first twenty minutes to prep for the following day. Plan your lunch, your clothes and jot down anything crucial on your to-do list. The next twenty minutes should be all about you. Get through your nightly routine like getting into pyjamas, washing your face, and doing your skincare routine. The last twenty minutes can be incorporated doing whatever satisfies your ‘me’ time bucket. It could be a quiet activity like reading, watching a few episodes of your favourite show or listening to music. It’s important to limit the time to twenty minutes though.
Calm yourself before bedtime with this serene guided meditation.
Don’t accumulate sleep debt
When you consistently go to bed too late and don’t get an adequate amount of sleep, you risk accumulating sleep debt. When you are chronically sleep-deprived, the body develops long-term health issues like high blood pressure, heart failure and increased risk of stroke, obesity, and diabetes. The risks are far more severe than just eye bags and dull skin.
Make a restful routine
Save your energy packed activities to get the blood gushing in the morning. Think about some yin yoga, journaling, meditation and reading as your post dinner activities.
It’s all about taking the time to better your overall wellness. If you want to improve your physical fitness, make time to go to the gym and work out. When you want to eat better, take the time to cook healthier meals. Similarly, if you want to sleep better, create a calming and relaxing routine to help you fall asleep easier and get better, more restful sleep.