5 Ways to Wind Down After a Long Day on the Computer

Have you ever noticed how difficult it can sometimes be to wind down after a long session of coding, writing or playing games? As much as you may love your computer, smartphone or game console, staring at a screen that emits bright blue light for several hours disrupts your body’s natural circadian rhythms and can make it difficult for you to relax when your computer time is over.

One of the best ways to ensure that you’ll have no trouble winding down and falling asleep at the end of the day is by discontinuing all computer use at least a couple of hours before you intend to go to bed. That may not be possible, though, if your computer is your primary work tool and you must work late at night. It may also be the case that playing games is your favorite form of entertainment, and you simply can’t think of anything else that you’d rather do at night. Regardless of why your computer is keeping you up at night and preventing you from relaxing, this article is for you.

Can’t seem to wind down after a long day on the computer? These tips may help.

Stop Using Caffeine and Nicotine at the End of the Day

Stimulants like caffeine and nicotine seem to be natural aspects of certain types of computer use. It’s not unusual for coders to be found drinking coffee or soda and smoking cigarettes or vaping well into the night. If you’re the type of person who drinks caffeine or uses nicotine – or does both – heavily regardless of the time of day, there’s a good chance that you no longer feel any kind of rush from your stimulant use and have come to the conclusion that you’re simply immune. The truth, though, is that caffeine can impede your ability to wind down at the end of the day regardless of how high your tolerance may be.

Caffeine remains in your bloodstream for much longer than you may realize. It has a half-life in the body of about five hours, which means that as much as a quarter of the caffeine from your morning coffee could still be in your bloodstream when you go to bed at the end of the day. That’s a pretty slow elimination time, which means that you definitely shouldn’t be drinking caffeine at night if you want to sleep well. Likewise, you should stop smoking or vaping – or at least switch to a nicotine-free e-liquid – at least an hour or two before your computer time is over.

Use Your Computer’s Blue Light Reduction Feature

One of the biggest reasons why late-night computer use is so harmful to sleep quality is because the bright blue light produced by the screen disrupts your body’s circadian rhythms and impedes your production of the “sleep hormone” melatonin. As we mentioned earlier in the article, the best way to prevent blue light from disrupting your ability to wind down at the end of the day is to avoid late-night computer use. If that’s not possible, Windows and Mac OS both have features that can shift your computer’s display away from the blue end of the color spectrum. The feature is called Night Light in Windows and Night Shift in Mac OS. You can configure your computer to shift the display automatically at night and return it to its original configuration during the day.

Take a Supplement That Can Help to Support Relaxation and Stress Reduction

If you’re already doing everything you can to minimize the impact of your computer usage on your ability to relax and unwind at the end of the day, it might be a good idea for you to consider taking a supplement that can help. Since exposure to blue light can hamper your body’s melatonin production, taking melatonin as a supplement might be a good idea. Some people have reported good results when taking products like CBDMD gummies. Passionflower and valerian root are both popular herbal sleep aids. You may also find it helpful to drink a cup of chamomile tea at night. These are just a few of the popular herbal supplements that may help to support relaxation, so try them and see how they work for you.

Try a Meditation Session After Finishing the Day’s Work

Instead of trying to transition directly from work to relaxation or sleep after a long computer session, you might find it helpful to set aside a few minutes to reset and clear your mind between times of work and times when you want to relax. Meditation can be an excellent way to reset your mind because it’s extremely easy to do – and for many people, it really does help to relieve stress.

Meditation might sound like something you can’t really do unless you’ve read a book or gone through special training, but that’s really not the case at all. Meditation is really nothing more than setting aside a few minutes to clear your mind of the disorganized, chaotic thoughts that make it difficult for you to unwind at the end of the day. During your session, you’ll focus on a single basic thought or mantra. Every time your mind begins to wander, you’ll return to that basic thought. That’s it! The easiest way to get started is by downloading a guided meditation app for your phone. There are many options available for both iPhone and Android devices.

Add Some Light Exercise to Your Routine

If you don’t find meditation helpful – or it just isn’t your thing – another way to reset your mind after a long computer session is with some light physical activity. It isn’t necessarily a good idea to completely drain your body with an all-out workout after a long computer session. Instead, just get your body moving for a few minutes by going for a quick walk. Light exercise is a great way to reset your mind and unwind. You may also find the fresh air helpful. When you return home after your walk, you’ll probably find it much easier to wind down and relax.




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