"The more specifically participants wrote their to-do list, the faster they subsequently fell asleep," the study authors wrote. "The opposite trend was observed when participants wrote about completed activities."
The scientists noted their study was small and could be improved with more subjects. However, they believe their findings are strong.
“There are two schools of thought about this,” Scullin said. “One is that writing about the future would lead to increased worry about unfinished tasks and delay sleep, while journaling about completed activities should not trigger worry. The alternative hypothesis is that writing a to-do list will ‘offload’ those thoughts and reduce worry.”
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