• Left IT Behind

8 Easy Tips for a Good Night Sleep - An IT Guy's Experience and Tips

Updated: Mar 29

If you are like me and into IT career or have a very stressful job, the chances of you struggling to sleep well on a regular basis (due to work stress or boss stress) are very high. The fact that you are reading this article kind-of validates my statement above. Now that we established why we are here, I will get into point quickly and will not bore you with benefits of sleep or issues of not having a good night sleep or some studies conducted kind of content.

As a disclaimer for CYA purpose, I am not a medical professional and these are completely based on my experiences. You should consult a doctor if you have serious conditions around sleep or insomnia.

With that out of our way, here are some of the tips that I have followed by watching multiple videos or reading several articles over time.

1. Find a Hobby

More often than not, we tend to think that job is our life as it is providing us income and supporting our lifestyle. That mentality usually becomes a culprit in messing up our sleep as we stress out a lot and make simple issues much more complex in our brains. Just keep in mind that it's just a job and only part of your life.

The best way to counter this is by finding a nice hobby that you enjoy. For some people it's playing with their kids and for some people it's exercise and for some others it's nice walk in nature or playing golf. Whatever it is, as long as there is some physical activity included you are good.

Only you can decide what hobby works best for you. A big no-no for a hobby is sitting in-front of laptop or phone again and watching YouTube or playing video games or browsing Reddit.

2. Keep the bedroom as bedroom

This may sound silly but in reality majority of us don't actually use bedroom as bedroom. We have TVs in there, we spend ton of time with our phones on bed, and in some extreme cases we even do office work in bedrooms. One thing that helped me was to remove all these distractions from bedroom and keep the bedroom as bedroom with some pleasant items like scented candles or essential oils.

Another tip I followed was removal of clock in the bedroom. At times, when I was struggling to go to sleep staring at clock was creating more anxiety and delayed the process of getting into sleep further. Your mileage may vary on this but it sure helped me.

3. Super obvious tip: Reduce the screen time

We all know it yet we pretty much ignore it. It's very important to reduce the screen-time for our Instagram or Twitter or whatever that's keeping you with your phone on bed and before going to bed.

Few things that helped me are:

  • Adjusting phone home-screen such that none of those infinite scrolling apps are in my home screen so that you don't have that app staring at you the moment you unlock the phone.

  • Disabled most of notifications for the social apps or infinite scrolling apps.

  • And lastly found a hobby to take long walks every evening. Sometimes it's a beach, sometimes it's around the house, and sometimes it's near a temple (not suggesting anything religious but just sharing what worked for me).

4. Practice meditation and/or yoga

There are tons of articles around the benefits of meditation and yoga so I won't try to copy the content here or explains things that are not my expertise. All I can say is that it actually works. It's not going to happen overnight or in one day and you definitely have to put some effort in getting into the rhythm. Once you are in it, its guaranteed that it will make your life better whether by improving sleep or by improving physical and mental stability.

If you want to get started with mindful meditation, check out by 3 step guide here

5. Think of positive things that happened during the day

After coming home from work (or logging off from work with all of us working from home these days due to pandemic) try to focus all your energy on the positive things you have accomplished today. It can be good outcome in the project or something you did for your colleague which made their life happy. This kind of eases your mind and divert you away from anger or conflicts or frustrations that happened during the day.

It's okay if you don't have a positive thing for a given day, focus on what happened during that week. If you are not having anything positive in a week as well then its probably time to seriously rethink of how you are operating in office or work hours and practice some 'good karma' principles. The help you do today to your colleagues in making their lives better will eventually come back and help you later. One spiritual book that I can recommend along these lines is The Yamas and Niyamas

6. Get out of your house

It's very easy to lose track of time during our office working hours and after we sign-off we tend to feel very tired and become couch potato. It is very important to take a moment to get out of the couch and eventually get of house to be in touch with nature preferable when there is still some sunlight present. This is where having a good hobby helps to get out of your house and have some pleasant time outside.

7. Another super obvious tip: Eating healthy

As obvious as it is, we tend to ignore healthy eating habits and prefer junk. It may not be obvious immediately but over time it deteriorates the quality of sleep. It is also easier said than done so here are some of the things that I followed which helped me over time.

  • Quitting or heavily reducing alcohol. Alcohol and junk food kind of goes hand in hand as we want to eat more junk while drinking. Reducing alcohol intake kind of indirectly helped in eating relatively healthy.

  • Forcing myself out of take-out foods and cooking at home. Even if it's a simple dish, it ended up being much healthier option than cheesy goodness I was getting from take-out foods.

  • Ensuring that I drink enough fluids be in water or water or water (wink) to eliminate unrealized consumption junk in the form of soft drinks or heavily sugared juices.

  • Lastly, drinking a hot glass of milk at night really helped me to fall a sleep quickly

8. Maintain consistent sleep cycle

The last and most important tip of all is to maintain a consistent sleep cycle. This means going to bed at around the same timeframe (an hour here and there) and waking up every day at around the same timeframe. No exceptions to weekends or holidays. Without even realizing, this tip significantly helped my sleep quality. I am not the right person to explain the science behind it but I can confirm from my experience that this tip actually helps and works in improving sleep over time !!

Finally, at the end of the day if none of the above tips are helping and the work and/or boss stress is still keeping you awake at nights then it's a clear indication that this particular job is not right for you. I know it's easier said than done but it's worth the effort in preparing and finding the right job for you than trying to cope up and struggle with the current one.

That's all from my and hope this was helpful to you. Peace !!!

On a side note, if you have any other ideas or suggestion please leave them in the comments below for helping other readers. I will add the best ones to the article in future.