So, you’ve survived the day - congratulations! What better way to celebrate than laying under the covers aimlessly scrolling through your phone - Right? Wrong.
With so much research available at our fingertips, it should be no surprise that not indulging in screen time an hour before bed will work wonders for your mental space. Whether you have your nights to yourself, share them with a spouse or roommate we all tend to share the common nighttime routine of scroll, scroll and repeat. By all means grant yourself the time to catch up on your social media feed or worldly news after your work day but once you cross the line of scrolling without purpose, be intentional enough to put your phone down- especially before your head hits the pillow.
Here are 5 ideas of things to do instead of aimlessly scrolling on your phone:
1. Be Playful
Playing a board game or working on a puzzle can help you wind down from the day. Research shows that activities such as puzzle solving or coloring (yes, there are adult coloring books and they are amazing) not only has the ability to help improve your mood but your memory as well. So leave your phone down in the other room and spend some time being playful before you call it a night.
2. Read Something
Gift yourself the precious opportunity of getting lost in the pages of a new book. Diving into a story and magic of pages in between their fingers is one of life’s simplest pleasures.There are so many helpful reading lists out there to spark your interest and the best part? You can choose anything you want! Whether it be to be a love story, mystery or memoir - the options are endless. Start a book club, like Reese Witherspoon did, with a group of friends or make it a fun goal to read a book a month.
3. Start Journaling
Say hello to the best therapy one could ask for: pen to paper. Gifting yourself the time and space to write it out is equivalent to adding a drop of magical mental clarity into your life. The wonderful thing about journaling is that there is no “right” or “wrong” way to do so. Without overthinking, let your pen flow and whatever comes out on the other end is your own and that makes it valid. Deciding what to share with a piece of paper is entirely up to you. It can be emotions that you need to release, details of your day, a small memory that you never want to forget or simply acknowledging something / someone that you are grateful for. Journaling is a relaxing way to end the day while positively resetting for the day ahead.
4. Use Your Voice
If writing simply isn’t your medicine why don’t you try talking it out.Instead of sitting next to your partner or roommate on the couch scrolling in silence, make it a point to put your phones down and have a conversation. You don’t need to solve all of the world’s problems by the time you go to bed but connecting with each other before curling up under the covers is a soul filling way to close out the day. In addition, releasing your thoughts can help to reduce stress and lead to a better night’s sleep. If you live alone, pick up the phone to call your mom or BFF. Be present in those conversations and chat away! Connecting with others is a necessary form of medicine - don’t let your phone rob you of that time. These conversation cards for a fun way to chat amongst family, friends or with your partner.
5. Turn Up The Volume
Podcasts and music have a reputation to only be listened to when in the car and while we too love doing so, you can also listen outside of your car. If you are obsessed with podcasts, throw in your headphones and listen while you’re folding laundry or on a walk. If you’re in the mood to listen to your favorite album or indulge in a new release, let the tunes make you do a little dance while you’re cooking dinner. You’ll find what works for you but either way, listening is a wonderful alternative to aimlessly scrolling on your phone.
So, instead of aimlessly looking at your phone, take some time to meditate, get up to get a healthy snack, or listen to relaxing music. Instead of checking emails late at night, put your phone away an hour or two before bedtime and dig into a good book instead. Let’s just learn to separate you and your mind from your phone. You can do it!