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Zero Electronics

Quick Tip: Ditch the screens before bed

How to get more things done in your day, wake up more refreshed, and have more energy

Sounds like it’s too good to be true, right?! Actually, it’s a pretty easy tip that has great benefits. Have zero major electronic devices in your bedroom. No TV, mobile phone, tablet, or any device with a screen. Ditch the screens!

First off, why will eliminating electronics have all those benefits? Easy — it will help focus on what the bedroom is meant for: sleeping. Anything with a screen will stop the production of melatonin, the sleeping hormone, while you are using it. The bright light sends the signal to your body that the sun is up and it’s daytime. Granted, you can sleep right after you have used these devices, but after a while you can develop a mild form of insomnia or be unable to sleep as deeply as you should.

Having a constant stimulus to your brain will not allow it to relax and wind down until you are so exhausted you almost pass out. It is a myth that watching TV helps your relax; sitting and not doing anything is giving your body time to relax, but it is keeping your mind stimulated and awake. You need to let your brain relax and let it fully recover with deep sleep. A great way to relax your brain and let it get in the routine of knowing it’s bedtime is to have a sleep routine. I personally enjoy taking a shower in dim lighting, brushing my teeth, taking supplements, writing in my journal (if I need write down any lingering thoughts I have in my head that keep me awake), and reading a non-engaging book in bed.

Without electronics in the room, once you wake up it will force you to get up out of bed. The desire to lie in bed and watch TV or check your Facebook status is quite high if you have that device inches from your head once you open your eyes. Speaking for myself, I know once Monday morning comes around I am not always the most motivated to seize the day. The thought of lying in bed until the last minute is always a thought. With the internet at my fingertips, it makes that unproductive desire even easier.

Probably the biggest complaint I have heard to this tip is that people need TV to fall asleep. However, in my experience you need to find ways to clear your head and relax, and possibly a white noise machine will be of good use. The second complaint is that people need their phones right by them in case of an emergency, which is understandable. I would suggest either a landline phone (one of those phones that is actually plugged into a wall) or have the phone in the room but not within arm’s reach.

By making your bedroom a no-electronics room, you will:

  • Be able to sleep more deeply due to the lack of light shining in your face.
  • Wake up and get up out of your bed first thing.
  • Create a routine to help train your body and brain to know when it’s time to sleep.