Raise your hand if you've sent an embarrassing text message — the message that neither you nor your friend can understand because it looks like gibberish, or the one that's accidently sent to someone who shouldn't have read it.
Did you ever think that your nighttime pings, rings, and vibrates could be the reason why?
Lack of sleep can cause you to send embarrassing texts. But more important, sending and receiving messages late at night can disrupt your sleep and leave you tired and unfocused when it's time for school. Studies show that lack of sleep, or interrupted sleep, can affect everything from your mood to your sports performance.
Sure, you want to stay connected with your friends, but how useful can you be when you're exhausted? Give your "tech" (texts, emails, calls) a rest from bedtime until your alarm clock rings so you can rest.
How can you ease out of being accessible — but sluggish — all the time to unplugging at bedtime? Here are some tips to follow at night that will help boost your energy and focus in the morning:
Log off your instant messenger, Facebook, and email. Pings in the middle of the night can interrupt your sleep — even if you don't get up to answer them. And, more than likely, if your friends see that you're logged out, they'll log out too.
Turn off your cell phone (don't just set it on vibrate) when it's time for bed. Buzzes can be just as loud as beeps or rings, especially late at night when everything else is quiet. Plus, if your friends have no one to talk to, maybe they'll be inspired to turn off their cell and catch some Zzzs, too.
Get in the habit of powering off your computer — especially if it's in your room. Sometimes just logging off your instant messenger or Facebook is not enough. Blinking lights and glowing screens can make it harder to fall and stay asleep.
Get your cell phone out of your room completely. Try charging your phone overnight in a separate room. While your cell battery is restoring, you can get the sleep you need to recharge your own battery. Having your cell in another room can reduce the chance that you'll use it during and after bedtime.
Make getting enough sleep your way to look and feel good. Getting sleep is a great way to look and feel refreshed and focused in the morning. To get the sleep you need, tell your friends you will receive your last text, email, or phone call an hour before bedtime. This way, they'll know their beeps or buzzes will have to wait.
It can be quite a challenge to go from being constantly accessible to powering down at a certain time. But sticking to a cut-off curfew for your gadgets and gizmos will help you ease into bedtime and give your brain some tech-free downtime. And if you need an excuse, just say your parents are making you do it.