And I logged 2 of my worst nights of sleep in months. 🤦♀️
Besides the fact that it was my birthday week and I stayed in 3 different hotels (the topic of variable sleep environments tends to negatively impact sleep quality, although that is for another article!), the truth is:
I allowed my phone to keep me awake.
Because I am committed to getting the best sleep of my life--even while traveling (!)--these recent nights have shown me that it is time to make some changes!
If any of you are interested in Marie Kondo-ing your digital life with me...please read on AND share with me any and all of your “Digital Tidying” tricks!
Here are some of the things that I’ve started doing in the last 48 hours!
1. “Text Message Zero”: You’ve heard of Inbox Zero. Well, I have always been fascinated with the fact that my boyfriend’s sister, Madison Eastman deletes ALL of her text messages at the end of every day. At first, I thought this was a crazy practice, BUT I just did it last night and it is oddly addictive! You get that little dopamine hit each time you swipe AWAY a conversation. It allows for a sense of completion with each social interaction versus leaving yet another digital “open loop”.
PERSONAL CONTEXT: One of the biggest reasons for those sleepless nights I mentioned above was that I was approaching social media like an amateur. Maybe it’s the “only child” in me, but online sharing does NOT come naturally to me… so recently I joined a paid challenge on the Spar app to force me to share more regularly on Instagram.
Night idea right?
I thought so too, until we went on a 2 day of temple tour in Cambodia and when we got back to the hotel, I had hundreds of pictures on my phone and no idea where to begin. Suddenly the task of organizing, editing, and posting felt overwhelming so I put it off. I continued to procrastinate doing anything about it until I was at the very end of the deadline and suddenly at around 9pm, I found myself staring at the blindingly bright screen and getting to work.
This all might sound comical, but I cannot tell you the number of graphic designers, photo editors, and photographers that I work with whose sleep is totally trashed because of all of that bright light and stimulation before a deadline.
That’s why anytime that you are working on an electronic device that involves the need to work with an accurate color display, you need to take additional steps to ensure that it does not negatively impact your sleep. You cannot wear blue blockers or apply a screen filter because that alters the display.
Steps to take when you absolutely MUST interact with non-native blue light your devices:
Take control of your calendar. Commit to editing & scheduling posts during daylight hours ONLY. (I started making this a morning activity. I have found that the blue light wakes me up and I set a timer so that I’m not exposed to the light for too long!) ***Again, the problem with editing, posting, and working with online images is that you have to know what you’re looking at, so you cannot work on photo editing with Blue Blockers or my favorite Iris Redlight Sleep Filter on. If you do this at night, your sleep WILL suffer.
Download a social media scheduler ***THIS IS KEY FOR TRAVELING / DIGITAL MINIMALISM! Timezone posting strategy and getting great sleep don’t always go hand in hand! Allow the scheduler to do this for you!
Develop categories, folders, organizational systems so that you can easily sort & delete pictures (ruthlessly & regularly!)
Download a powerful editing program that allows you to do everything all on one platform (I chose Lightroom and added it to both my Mac & iPhone)
1. Clean up your digital workspace. Example: this is what my desktop looks like now:
2. Here is what my iPhone looks like after deleting around 30 apps, organizing folders, and going with my favorite New Yorker wallpaper color: BLACK. :)
3. My boyfriend, Blake just added me to the waitlist of Superhuman, the very cool, streamlined, and minimalistic email app. We are friend’s with the Co-founder, Vivek Sodera and I’m very excited to streamline my formerly messy email experience with this!
4. Finally got on the Instapaper / Feedly train which has allowed me to stop splintering my attention and instead organize articles to read when I’m good and ready! Also, loving that Instapaper will read the articles out loud to me!
The Sleep Reset
A 45-Day Online Experience Designed to Change the Way You Sleep Forever. Become the Best Sleeper You Know.