How a messy bedroom affects sleep
A messy, cluttered bedroom can affect you more than you might think, especially when it comes to bedtime.
In fact, a study, conducted by New York’s St. Lawrence University, revealed that a messy bedroom can lead to a poor night’s sleep and increased anxiety.
It’s not your office, gym or playroom
Your bedroom shouldn’t be your office, gym or playroom. Items relating to these places need to be removed as they are all potential distractions.
Have you been guilty of having an exercise bike in the bedroom or working from your bed? If the treadmill or bike is now a place to hang your clothes rather than exercise – move it! You also need to get rid of the computer, work desk or paperwork – this is not where they belong. We know working from home is more common than ever, so if you have no other option but to work in the bedroom (NOT the bed!), then tidy away work-related items at the end of the day, ideally out of sight completely.
No one expects the bedroom to be pristine at all times. However, if your bedroom is crammed with junk, tidy it or reorganise it. Sort the laundry, clear the piles of books away and hide toys away. A bedroom is designed as a place to rest and relax.
While you sleep with your eyes closed – and therefore can’t see the clutter when asleep – it is the last thing you look at before you catch some Zzzs, which may influence any anxious or worrying thoughts.
Remove the tech
In an ideal world, there would be no electronic devices in the bedroom, including the TV. This may seem harsh but it will help you sleep better. The bedroom is not an extension of your living room. While there’s nothing wrong with watching a film, playing games or answering emails, these tasks should not be completed in bed – and ideally should be avoided in the hour before bedtime!
Not only do these devices emit the blue sleep-stealing light that suppresses your melatonin levels, but they are often used for consuming content that may rob you of sleep because it’s so engaging. Beeps, buzzes and even the tiniest standby lights can play havoc with the body’s circadian rhythm, so make sure everything is switched off at the mains or, even better, banned completely!
The bedroom as a sleep sanctuary
When you get into bed, it’s really important to associate the bedroom as a place to sleep. Having your bedroom as the place to go for other activities only leads your brain to associate the room with other things. If your bedroom is where your office is, it can help make your mind busy and even anxious about work, because you correlate the room with busy work.
So, ban clutter for a more sleep-friendly environment! Remember a tidy room makes for a tidy mind – and a tidy mind is what you need for sleep.