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September 16, 2019

Keep Your Phone Away From Your Bed

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Keep your phone away from your bed at night. For years, I have kept my phone plugged in, sometimes even on loud, not too far from where I sleep. It was necessary in my last job because I was on call, and the habit continued until recently. I liked the flexibility of being able to address anything urgent or stay aware of people trying to get in touch with me, but I didn’t realize the cost that it all comes at. That cost comes in two main ways.

First, keeping your phone near your bed likely means that it is the last thing you engage with before you go to sleep. The blue light on our phones throws off our circadian rhythm and actually makes it harder to go to sleep. Keeping your phone away let’s you wrap up a few other things before bed, helping to restore your circadian rhythm and improve the quality of your sleep.

Second, is when your alarm goes off in the morning it forces you to get on your feet. I never snooze my alarm, but I do have a tendency to wake up slowly and rest my eyes for about 5 more minutes before I start my day. If I wanted to continue with that in my new practice, standing up and getting on my feet brings all of my attention to the times when I do decide to slide back into bed. This worked so well that I only did that once in the last 3 weeks. Because of that, I find myself starting my days 5 minutes earlier with the same amount of rest.

So, I’d encourage you to try it. Keep your phone away from your bed tonight and see how you feel in the morning. My guess is that you fall asleep quicker, wake up faster, and start your day sooner.

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