Last month I decided that I would no longer bring my cell phone into the bedroom at night and instead leave it in the kitchen. When I tell people this they look at me like I’m out of my mind. I can see the questions in their eyes “what do you use for an alarm clock?” or “what if someone needs to get in touch with you at night?”
I am happy to say that so far there has been nothing but positive outcomes from this experiment and it turns out this was one of the best things I could do for me and my sleep.
No Cell Phone After 8:00pm
We usually put our kids down to sleep between 7:30pm and 8:00pm. Part of our nighttime routine is we play a bedtime song after reading them a book. Those songs are all on my phone so I carry it with me to their rooms and when I’m done I take the phone and leave it in the kitchen. From 8:00pm until the next morning you can’t reach me via email, text, phone call, facetime, or anything. I’m “off the grid”.
The mental space I’ve created with no phone allows my mind to relax and unwind from the day. No more checking emails just before bed or reading up on social media. There is too much risk of something negatively impacting my sleep and it’s not worth it. If I need to remind myself of something I write it down on paper (old school style) and leave it to deal with in the morning.
So far in the 6 weeks I have been doing this, not once has there been an issue that needed my attention before I got to it in the morning.
Giving My Mind Space In The Morning
The other amazing benefit of no phone in the room is that my mind gets extra time in the morning to warm up. I used to wake up and the first thing I would do is grab my phone and turn it on. Within seconds I’m flipping through emails, Instagram, Twitter, checking the news, etc. My mind was just waking up and I was slamming a screen with bright lights into my face, forcing my mind to get going immediately. I equate it to waking up and immediately start running without warming up, you don’t do that to your body so why do we do it to our minds.
My new routine allows me to wake up, brush my teeth, check on my daughters and start making my morning tea before my eyes meet any electronic screen. That gives my mind about 15+ minutes to rev up the engine and get going.
No Phone = Better Sleep
Removing the phone from my bedroom has made a major impact on my sleep helping drive my average night of sleep from 6hr 30min to now over 7hr 15min. It took a lot to take the plunge and make the change but now that I have, I wonder why I waited to so long to do it.