How to Stop Staying Up Late
It makes sense; staying up has its perks. You get to do all the stuff you think you enjoy doing without being bothered. Whether it is for video games, texting your friends, or because of anxiety for the next day, it can be rewarding.
However, on a school night, if you are depressed, or rushing to finish work, staying up late becomes difficult over time. It causes you stress for the next day, makes you irritated easily, and affects your performance the next day.
Here are 15 tips for making sure you stop staying up late at night:
17 Tips on How to Stop Staying Up All Night
- Take care of your room. By care, we mean keeping it tidy, organized, and clear of junk. Often times, when we get carried away with our day-to-day activities, we neglect self-care and begin to lose track of our health and well-being. Habitually cleaning your room not only gets rid of junk from your view, but also develops a healthy mindset to not forget you are someone important and worth taking care of.
- Understand why you stay up at night. Knowing what it is you are facing helps you fight the urges to keep awake, doing other things. Sometimes it’s due to distractions, but most of the time it’s how we perceive ourselves. If you think it’s ok to stay up because “this is who you are”, then it will be difficult to stop entirely.
- Figure out what kind of person you want to be. Sleeping late usually doesn’t happen without an underlying reason. Whether it’s because we give up time to spend it with our friends or can’t help ourselves to another round of video games, it’s far too easy to get carried away. Putting your foot down, and finding what kind of person you truly want to be will not only help deter poor evening and sleep habits, but also encourage the right ones.
- Set a schedule and stick to it. As much as we prefer dictating our own lives, we all have due dates, deadlines, and appointments to get to. Knowing where the starting point and cut-off point in your day will give you a better idea of when to stop. Again, it’s easy to slip up so knowing the starts and ends of your schedule will make you more aware of your night.
- Cut out caffeine midday. Caffeine is a great for waking up and maintaining your concentration. But close to the second half of your day, caffeine might inhibit drowsiness before bedtime. Although it might be difficult to pinpoint caffeine as the culprit for keeping you up late at night, eliminating it can do wonders for sleeping quicker and sleeping better.
- Plan your evening every day. We plan most of our day, scheduling our appointments, meetings, and the work that needs our attention. When all that is done, what happens in our evening? Whether you are caught up with chores or have free time to spend, having a plan, albeit a bad one, will help ensure you go to bed on top.
- Follow a bedtime routine. We are creatures of habit, and having the right bedtime routine can make it easier to habitually fall asleep on time. Creating and executing a bedtime routine, which we will suggest a few ideas in the upcoming points, will not only guarantee you snooze sooner than later, but also let you know when everything is going as planned.
- Practice good sleep hygiene. Sleep hygiene are habits, practices, and rituals that are conducive to a good night of sleep. They include not only following a set bedtime routine, but also ensuring the environmental conditions are right. Your bedroom ideally should be used for only sleep and sex, and you should avoid introducing work or entertainment activities that might keep you awake at night. Your bedroom should also be cool, dark, and quiet to encourage the best sleep possible each night.
- Read a book every night. Although reading a good book might seem like something to keep you up late at night, there are studies showing reading as one of the top activities for reducing stress levels. You can either be reading a good fiction novel or something non-fiction to educate yourself. Either way, taking your mind off of your day-to-day life and enjoying a good book can be part of a great routine for relaxing before falling asleep.
- Spend time doing nothing. And we do mean sitting down and not fumbling with anything. Some people like to meditate while others reflect. During this time, it’s important to give yourself a moment to process the impulsiveness, the emotions, and the thoughts going through your head. If you are have thoughts racing through your head every night, this might be what you need to digest what is going on in your life.
- Avoid that extra meal before bed. When we stay up late, there is a tendency to munch on snacks or eat an extra meal. Although there is no surefire way to entirely avoid eating, making sure you eat before your intended bedtime ensures you don’t eat too late. Eating too close to bedtime can cause indigestion, especially when you lay flat on your bed. This can make sleeping difficult or downright unpleasant.
- Journal to capture your thoughts before bed. Our brains are amazing at keeping track of everything going on, albeit poorly sometimes. When we have something that needs to be done, you can develop a nagging feeling that can keep you up at night. It doesn’t have to be something done either. Writing down what you are thinking has helped others ease their minds so they can sleep peacefully at night. You can also spend this time reflecting and planning out your day so you can stay ahead of everything.
- Make sure you get active each day. The human body can do a lot of great things. However, if nothing physically demanding is done during the day, it’s much more likely we become restless at night. There is a lot of research backing up our need for daily exercise, too. You can take up something simple like yoga or using body weight exercises. YouTube has many beginner yoga series and all you need is a good attitude to start doing push-ups, crunches, and burpees. Pick one thing and get started today!
- Avoid doing activities in your bedroom. Doing homework, being on the computer, and browsing Instagram and Facebook impulsively on your smartphone makes it less likely for you to sleep. If you have the habit of checking your phone when you climb into bed, then it’s more important that you start breaking these habits now. Your bedroom should be only for sleep and sex. Anything else can be done elsewhere. (Yes, that includes Netflix!)
- Get an accountability partner. As silly as it may seem, sometimes we need a buddy to help us get past our roadblocks. Having a partner to openly discuss strategies and tactics for sleeping better can be encouraging. Not only will you have an external force itching you to sleep earlier, but also someone trustworthy to confide to about your challenges. Sleeping earlier can be difficult, but with a partner, it can be made easier.
- When it doubt, revisit the basics. Every tip we listed might seem simple and you might have done it before already. But if you find yourself up late at night still, it might be because something went wrong. It’s easy to let yourself get carried away with “just another episode” of your favorite series. Before you know it, you’re here reading this at 2 in the morning!
- Forgive yourself for staying up again. With all said and done, it’s easy to forget we are only human. If we were robots, life might be much easier and we would be our best selves every day. But we aren’t, so we have to treat ourselves with compassion; it’s how we can get through tough times just like tonight.
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all strategy or tactic for stopping you from staying up late at night. And sometimes one idea works for a while, then you find yourself up at night again. It’s normal and is to be expected; we’re only human, after all.
What’s important is you keep trying. Either following your routine a little differently or keeping track of what you do each night in a journal (pen and paper or digitally). That way, you can look back and see what improvements you can make so you can sleep better the next night.
There might not be an end to our poor sleep habits, but there can always be a start to being a better sleeper.