Airplane Mode — The Hidden Key to Great Sleep

Every night at 10pm I switch my phone to Airplane mode. This nightly ritual accomplishes 2 key objectives:

  1. Serves as a reminder to “wind-down.” Airplane mode disables essentially all forms of phone-based sleep procrastination: work email, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, etc. It also, over time, creates a Pavlovian effect wherein you begin to associate switching the setting with going to sleep
  2. Eliminates any chance of unwanted middle-of-the-night intrusions. This can be even more valuable than the first. The benefits of all the well-planned bedtime rituals in the world can be canceled out pretty easily by one drunk text from a friend, or an errant 2am push notification from some app you forgot you installed
  3. (Bonus Reason) If we find out in 2050 that the cellular signals emitting from our phones has been melting our brains, this will have saved you from just under 100,000 hours of cancer death-rays

A common concern I hear when I tell people that I do this is that they won’t be reachable in the case of an “emergency.” Unless you are an on-call doctor, police detective, or Batman, I don’t think anyone will need to reach you that urgently before the sun rises. Personally, I can’t think of the last time I received a call or text in the middle of the night that I was actually glad I received.

So give it a shot. Try it for a week. At the very least you get to have the exhilaration of 100 dings and buzzes when you switch Airplane mode off in the morning. Look, your Amazon order has shipped! You have a new 20% coupon from Bed, Bath & Beyond!

Originally posted here.