As Jerry Seinfeld famous observed, everyone has two alter egos. One is a ‘night guy’ and the other, ‘morning guy.’ While ‘night guy’ loves to stay up late, ‘morning guy’ loathes it and is left with the consequences of five hours sleep.
While our bodies are great at producing natural cues to let us know when we’re tired and when we should go to bed, many of us remain to be guided by our ‘night guy.’
Once the clock strikes 10pm our brains seem to go into over-drive and the world’s problems truly feel like they can be solved. There’s also a hell of a lot of box-sets that are just screaming to be watched late at night – just saying!
There are however some tricks that can come in handy, if you’re thinking of firing your ‘night guy.’ According to behavioural scientist Dan Ariely there are a few easy steps to stop the procrastination. One of those is enlisting the help of a friend who can act as a ‘sleep cop.’ Even if you live alone, Dan says swapping Snapchats of you in your pj’s with your ‘sleep cop’ can help. The buddy system has been shown to work for exercise, so why not sleep! Being held accountable can really help.
Setting a regular routine is also vital for a good night’s sleep. Getting a hot chocolate at a set time every night, or simply messaging your sleep buddy can all assist in training your brain to recognise when its time for bed.
Sleep experts recommend switching off devices hours before you intend to go to be as the light from your laptop and phone can effect you circadian rhythm.
Going to bed happy and not going to bed upset can also help. While it sounds obvious, going to bed after an upsetting conversation or dwelling on your problems at bed time will force you to stay awake.
Avoiding food, nicotine and alcohol will help you achieve a more restful sleep as each mess with your sleep cycle. While alcohol can speed up the onset of sleep, once your body metabolises the alcohol it forces your body to skip the second stages of sleep.
Rest easy sleep warriors!