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How to Stop Sleep Procrastination

If you find yourself going to bed later than you want and then feel frustrated because you are so tired in the morning, you are suffering from sleep procrastination and need to do something about it.

The need to finish

Some people cannot leave something once they have started. For example, they start watching a long late night movie on TV, but are determined not to sleep until the movie has ended, even though this may take them past their normal bedtime.

You may read before bedtime, but refuse to go to sleep until you have read just one more chapter.

There are two obvious solutions to this, don’t start something that you cannot finish before bedtime, or learn to stop an activity after a certain time.


If your relationship has ended, you may delay going to bed because you associate bedtimes with cuddling up with someone. Your empty bed triggers feelings of loneliness and this causes you to delay going to bed.

To overcome this, develop a bedtime routine. Read a chapter of a book in bed listen to an audiobook or relax with soothing music. Try to associate bedtime with these pleasant activities.

Thinking too much

Many people find that they have lots of thoughts and feelings whizzing around there brain when they go to bed, and delay bedtime because they do not like this happening. The way round this is to go to bed with a journal and write down your thoughts to get them out of your head so that you can then relax.

Personal time

If you have a busy job working with a team of colleagues and come home to the demands of your family, you may find that late night is the only time that you can have to yourself. You then find yourself staying up later and later in order to enjoy this “me” time.

Wanting time to yourself is understandable, but you also need enough sleep. One way round this is to allocate time during the day to you. Instead of lunch with colleagues go for a walk by yourself in order to think and reflect. When you spend time alone at night, create a strict time limit that enables you to retire early enough for a good night’s sleep.

It’s easy to find excuses for delaying going to bed, but remember that it is essential for your health to get enough sleep.

Count down the hours to sleep time