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What Is Revenge Bedtime Procrastination Pandemic?

written by / December 17, 2021
Revenge Bedtime Procrastination Pandemic

As it turns out, money problems, heavy workloads, screaming children, and other worries are not the only things keeping us awake at night. 

Some of us stay up to watch TV, browse social media, and do everything else we didn’t have time for during the day—a phenomenon called “revenge bedtime procrastination.” If you’ve ever watched an entire season of your favorite show on a worknight, you might be a revenge sleep procrastinator yourself.

But, what exactly is this behavior?

In short, it means sacrificing sleep to make time for activities we like, to gain a sense of freedom and control over our own life. Although this type of procrastination has been around for centuries, it hasn’t gotten the attention it deserved until last year.

In June 2020, this self-sabotaging habit was described in a tweet by journalist Daphne K. Lee, which went viral.

Many sleep procrastinators use computers, TVs, and cell phones in bed to delay eventually falling asleep, thus exposing themselves to all the harmful effects of sleep deprivation. What’s worse, 71% of cell phone users sleep in very close proximity to their devices, so even if they manage to fall asleep, they might be woken up by them.

Some have declared revenge bedtime procrastination a pandemic within the pandemic, playing perhaps one of the key roles in coronasomnia (the increased rate of insomnia during the COVID-19 pandemic).

The primary triggers for this are the blurred lines between private and work life, coupled with feelings of losing control.

Staying up at night to enjoy some free time is more common in women and those that suffer from other sleep disturbances, such as insomnia. It also happens to those working in a toxic work environment.  

So, how to get rid of this bedtime procrastination?

This habit has not yet been recognized as a sleep disorder. And while taking a good melatonin supplement can help us ease into sleep, the real solution lies in consulting a psychologist and finding an alternate way to regain our sense of control over our lives.

Marija Kovachevska is a content writer at, Biochemist and Activist. After obtaining her BSc in Biochemistry and Physiology she changed her microscope for content research tools and continued researching in the fields of Medicine, Biology, and Communication. Her insatiable curiosity flare drove her to become a “content scientist writer” as she likes to say. Reality fascinates her and facts and statistics are a must-have feature in her articles. Fluent in English and French, she is a volunteer and communication associate for several non-profit organizations. French culture and handcrafting are her passion, but in her free time, she indulges in long walks and traveling, or as she likes to say “experiencing the inexperienced.”

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