I initiated a difficult, but necessary break-up recently. As a result, I’m sleeping better, have fewer headaches, and am experiencing only minor withdrawal.
Because I use my iPhone as an alarm clock, I sleep with it next to my bed. Over the past few weeks, I found myself jumping on to Facebook and Twitter if I would wake up during the night, whether to use the bathroom or even just to shift. The light from the phone would force my eyes to wake up more than they wanted to, and then I’d struggle to fall back to sleep.
I knew what I had to do, though I resisted it. It was time to end this unhealthy relationship. OK, maybe not end it entirely, but put some boundaries in place.
I moved my charger from behind my bed into the bathroom. Because I need to charge my phone every night, I knew I’d be less apt to slip into our old routine if it was away from me.
Sure there are several times I go to reach for it just before bed to jot a note, check the weather, or answer an email, but fortunately I’m often too lazy to get up and shuffle the 10 feet to its new home.
As far as an alarm clock goes, I’m trying to go back to my old ways, when I could simply set an intention before bed about what time I needed to wake up and my body would naturally respond. Of course, I have a gentle-sounding backup, just in case, during the transition.
In this day and age, technology can really rule us. Could you use some boundaries in your relationship with your computer, phone, or tablet? Maybe you need some space. Consider a tech detox. Choose one day this week and challenge yourself to put away all computer-type technology from 3 PM on.
If you find yourself getting antsy, take some deep breaths or go for a walk. Maybe journal about it. Or read an old-fashioned book. You’ll be surprised at how refreshing it can be once you’re over the initial hump.
Now that my phone resides in the bathroom at night, I’m sleeping like a baby.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on the role — both good and bad — that technology plays in your world. Join the conversation in the comments below!