Revenge Bedtime Procrastination: What Is It and How Do We Deal With It?

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It’s 2AM, but you’re still scrolling through your phone, binge-watching Netflix even after a busy day. Oh, and you need to be up early for work tomorrow. Sound familiar? 

Related: Here Is The All-Natural Sleep Routine To Help Beat Insomnia

We’ve all been there—staying up later than we know we’re supposed to because it’s the only time we can actually do things we want. This is called Revenge Bedtime Procrastination. According to BBC, revenge bedtime procrastination is a phenomenon where “people who don’t have much control over their daytime life refuse to sleep early in order to regain some sense of freedom during late-night hours.” While this sounds like a new term to add to our vocabulary, the phenomenon is definitely widespread and is happening all over the world. Revenge bedtime procrastination is also said to be a “cry from overworked people,” according to CNN.

While putting off sleep for some more me-time might seem like a good idea at that moment, doing so repeatedly can have negative effects on our health. Staying up late every night may lead to chronic sleep deprivation, and negatively affect our productivity, mood, focus, and more. According to Huffpost, “People who are sleep-deprived can be irritable, forgetful, anxious, and may make poorer food choices. Obesity, diabetes, cardiac disorders, high blood pressure, mood disorders like anxiety and depression have all been linked to chronic sleep loss.”

So, what can we do to stop this?

Get On A Sleeping Schedule

The recommended amount of sleep for adults is between 7 to 9 hours. Try setting a sleeping and waking up time that gives you a healthy amount of sleep, and stick to these hours as much as possible. Yes, it can be difficult (especially when you’re used to sleeping late), but it will help you in the long run.

Follow A Bedtime Ritual

This means something that does not involve our phones, TVs, or laptops. Take a break from social media before bed too. Whether it’s doing your skincare routine, meditating, reading a book, journaling, or taking a well-deserved bubble bath, a good bedtime ritual can help get you more ready for bed and can help you feel more relaxed.

Take Breaks

Taking a break doesn’t mean you’re not doing work. Make a cup of coffee, make your favourite snack, or take a 15 minute power nap. By doing this, you can prevent feeling burnt out and may help you feel more energized to do more work!

Set Boundaries

Since we’ve all started working from home, it has blurred the lines between our personal and professional time. Setting boundaries like not answering work emails after work hours or giving yourself only until a certain time to work daily, can help give you your leisure time back.

Sleep is the foundational building block of mental health and although we all cope differently with less sleep, across the board it is something that is now being seen as of equal importance to exercise and diet.” No matter what you choose to do to help aid revenge bedtime procrastination, make sure you’re doing so in a safe and healthy way.