Personal Productivity Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for people wanting to improve their personal productivity. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Like many of us, I'm very productive at night. Often I'm reading or working when I should be sleeping, and as a consequence I wake up later in the morning next day. This is a real problem when you must go to work early in the morning or when you have an appointment before 10AM.

Is there a method or something like that to avoid being so active after 11PM for example?

share|improve this question
Very relevant, thanks, great question! Though personally I don't mind this in me :) – Dmitry Selitskiy Jun 25 '11 at 1:01
up vote 12 down vote accepted

What you describe is called a light version of the Delayed Sleep Phase Syndrome, I would suggest you to read up on this and what different solutions exist to make sure that you get rid of any Circadian Rhithm.

Work on it while you still can, because DSPS can have a great impact on your social and work life.

If you ever get so far that you're really stuck with it, then it's more worth to consider to just live with it and adapt your life style to it. As trying to fix something that is naturally forced upon you is going to make your life worse than just living with the fact that you have it and that it's actually not really that much of a problem if you adapt to it.

This is of course not always feasible and up to you, make sure to visit a doctor before it's too late...

share|improve this answer

When I have the problem you described, I go out from house at 9-10 PM and begin my evening workout. It is important to do it at fresh air, not at gym. Then I take warm shower and eat something light for stomach like cottage cheese. Then I go to bed.

It is miracle, but I get up early next morning!

So, you need:

  1. Evening physical activity on the fresh air (2-3 hours before you will sleep).
  2. Warm shower.
  3. Small light food portion OR cup of warm milk. Don't eat a lot!

Hope, it will help you.

share|improve this answer
I will argue with warm shower. I have read about (and then experimented with) cold showers before sleep and warm after to help getting to sleep/waking up. The argument is adjustment of body temperature: colder for sleep, warmer for being awake (almost like hibernation in animals). Works for me. – Dmitry Selitskiy Jun 25 '11 at 21:56
Warm shower helps to relax. So, it is usefull for good sleeping. Cold shower makes you cheerful. So, it is good in morning. Look Warm shower in Google – Denys P. Jun 26 '11 at 11:23
Again, very subjective. As I say what I described works for me well. Let's not argue about subjectivity. – Dmitry Selitskiy Jun 26 '11 at 14:10
Can you give source, where you read that cold shower is good before sleeping? Because it is not traditional. ;) – Denys P. Jun 26 '11 at 22:04
Sure, I'll look for it. Been a long time.. – Dmitry Selitskiy Jun 27 '11 at 1:10

Look at the standard tips for going to sleep earlier - relaxing, not using the computer right before bed, etc. But when it comes down to it, go to bed earlier and stop doing stuff. Even though you may not be tired, you'll get tired and fall asleep. Or not, but at least you'll relax. I know this sounds silly but I do this every time I take the red eye. I know I can sleep on it, but I still have to tell myself "even if I don't fall asleep, I just have to keep my eyes closed for half an hour". The act of having them closed gets me to fall asleep.

And when it comes down to it, admit that you are going to be tired if you are waking up two hours earlier than normal. Think about how your body reacts to that. For example, if it takes you an hour to be functional, get up an hour earlier than you need (as painful as that may be.)

For work, it is easier because it is regular and you can shift. For a one time appointment, you are quite limited in what you can do.

share|improve this answer
I do something of the same thing, when I know I'm tired but my mind won't stop buzzing. I say "I'll count backwards from 100 and when I get to 1, I can get up and do something else", and I wake up the next morning barely remembering the 70's... – silvermaple Jan 16 '12 at 3:14

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.