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What is sleep procrastination and do you have it?

Sleep Procrastination or Revenge Bedtime Procrastination as many may now know it as, has been a hot topic of discussion over the past few years as working adults and students seemed to be stretched thin to ever have time for themselves. What is sleep procrastination and do you have it? Read more to find out!

What is sleep procrastination?

It is defined as the decision to sacrifice sleep for leisure time that is driven by a daily schedule lacking in free time.

The behaviors identified with bedtime procrastination

  • Delay in going to sleep
  • An awareness that delaying one’s bedtime can set about negative effects later down the line.

The psychology behind sleep procrastination

Now there are two sides to this, some argue that it only has to do with our own self control or lack thereof but some others disagree and say its caused by people who are night owls by nature. Lets touch into both and find out!

  • This suggests that there is a failure in self control which is called the intention – behavior gap. When they intend to have enough hours of sleep, but end up staying up late on their electronic devices ultimately resulting in lesser hours of sleep.
  • On the other hand, sleep procrastination may be caused by people who are night owls biologically. But are forced to try and adapt to schedules designed for early birds therefore, this is an attempt to find recovery time due to stress during the day.

So what if I procrastinate about sleep? I’m just trying to get me time.

Well here’s the bad news… there are adverse effects of sleep procrastination and they aren’t pretty!

  • Sleep procrastination can cause sleep deprivation which in turn can have overall negative effects on your health, mentally and physically.
  • Insufficient sleep will degrade your thinking, memory and decision making.
  • It increases the risk of daytime sleepiness which can hinder productivity during work / study hours.
  • It worsens physical health, making it more susceptible to cardiovascular problems and metabolic disorders like diabetes.

Yikes! Having read that, how can I prevent this?

Lucky for you, I have the tips.

  • Set a consistent bedtime and waking time which includes non – working days. This is particularly important as when you have a rigid sleeping schedule, it can set the right tone for your sleeping habits.
  • Avoid any and all alcohol or caffeinated drinks late in the afternoon / evening. For obvious reasons, as caffeine and alcohol do not help you in the quality of your sleep.
  • Stopping the use of electronic devices before bed including the use of mobile phones, tablets and laptops. 

Photo by Marcus Aurelius from Pexels