Do You Have Bedtime Procrastination?

You know the feeling. It’s late and you were supposed to be asleep 20 minutes ago. But other distractions are calling, the new Stephen King novel, that final email for work you didn’t get to earlier. You should probably just call it a night, at least if you don’t want to be tired and cranky tomorrow. But you just…don’t. For many of us, putting off going to bed is an all too familiar problem. Yet psychologists only came up with a name for this behavior—bedtime procrastination. The team in the Netherlands who coined the term have argued in favor of poor self-regulation. But another camp of psychologists has recently proposed that our biological preference for waking and sleeping at certain times of day—may be a better explanation for bedtime procrastination. A key element of bedtime procrastination is that you don’t have a particular reason for not turning in. So staying up late because your children were sick or you needed to pick up your friend from the airport doesn’t count. The team has also found that people who have to resist more temptations throughout the day are more likely to cave to bedtime procrastination. One’s body clock could be responsible, that’s understudy. It will be some time before psychologists completely disentangle the contributions biology and self-control make to bedtime procrastination. So at the moment it’s still a mystery….Ed
Source: Kate Baggaley / Photo: Christopher Michel

Posted in All Stories, Ed McMahon

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