They used to be called “sleep diaries”, but in today’s tech-savvy world, fewer people are reaching pen and pad when they wake up to record their sleep habits and dreams. Instead, they rely on their smartphone or tablet. If you’re worried that your sleep habits are poor or want to track your dreams out of curiosity, it’s paramount that you record the previous night immediately upon waking up. Otherwise, you’ll forget details and they’ll get tucked into your subconscious.
There are pros and cons to looking at a screen immediately upon waking up. In some instances, such as if your CPAP machine is linked to a tech gadget, you need to make sure everything’s in working order. However, looking at a screen right away can also set you up with bad habits, such as starting the morning with a Facebook scroll (never a good idea).
Here are a few great reasons to start a sleep blog, and how to do it right:
1. You can self-identify bad habits
Do you find yourself getting up to relieve your bladder numerous times each night? That might be a symptom of a medical condition that needs treatment, or it might just mean you need to dehydrate a little before bed (but not to a dangerous level).
2. It’s easier to remember how your body feels right when you wake up
Chronic jaw aches in the morning? Do you have a body cramp in the same place? It’s easy to forget these minor annoyances later in the day, but a sleep blog will show you pangs that are recurring. These may need to be addressed, as jaw pain is often a sign of tooth grinding and body aches in the same spot might be a sign you need to work on a new sleep position or get a new mattress.
3. Your dreams quickly dissipate
If you’re interested in tracking your dreams, the only way to record them is right when you wake up. Otherwise, only a few details (if any) will be possible to recall later in the day. Whether you subscribe to the theory that dreams can tell you more about yourself or not, it’s certainly interesting to keep track.
4. It reminds you to do morning good habits
Only allow a few minutes (less than five) to job down details in your sleep blog. Otherwise, spend the first 30 minutes of the day screen-free for better well-being. This will give you your “fix” without disrupting your whole day.