Ellen Vora, M.D., is a holistic psychiatrist practicing with Frank Lipman, M.D., at the Eleven Eleven Wellness Center in NYC. This week, we're sharing Dr. Vora's expertise in a new series on natural techniques for better sleep. To learn more, check out her mindbodygreen course, The Doctor's Guide to Falling Asleep Naturally + Getting the Best Rest of Your Life.
The most important thing you can do to promote better sleep? Get the phone out of the bedroom.
That's right: Set up your charger outside the bedroom, kiss your phone good-night at least 30 minutes before bedtime, and make your bedroom a no-phone zone. Once you’ve done it, you’ll sleep better and feel better, and you’ll never look back. Do this tonight.
I know some of the excuses you’ll want to make: "But it's my alarm clock" (buy an analog alarm clock—it costs $10); "I need to know if I get an email at night" (do you really, though?); "It might help other people, but it’s not necessary for me" (Do you have eyes? Then it will help you); "It’s inconvenient" (nope, it’s really not); "But my charger is already set up in my bedroom" (oh pobrecito...take 30 seconds and move it). That got a little harsh. Sorry.
There is one legitimate excuse to make: I need to hear if someone calls me in an emergency. Fair enough. I recommend setting up your phone outside the bedroom but within earshot. Put the important people in your life in your Favorites, set the phone to an overnight do-not-disturb schedule, and check “allow calls from favorites.” Double check that you can hear your phone ring from your room. Problem solved.
Now that we’ve gotten the excuses out of the way, let’s discuss why it’s so important to get the phone out of the bedroom. There are three key reasons: