Why everyone needs a worry moment

Today, Dr. Harris reveals one of her secret weapons for a good night’s sleep, teaching you how to set a worry moment to keep nighttime stress at bay. Plus our podcast reveals the smart daily habits that help create a more peaceful night’s rest.


Task: Set a ‘worry moment’

The more you go to bed and tell yourself not to worry, the more the worries pop up. Setting a worry moment is a simple strategy to help reduce chronic worry. Here’s how:


  • From today, designate 20 minutes daily for your worry moment. Do it in the evening, but not within an hour of bedtime
  • Sit in a comfy spot and set a timer for 20 minutes.
  • Write all your worries on one piece of paper. No editing, just write it all down.
  • If the worries are unproductive, consider writing down “let it go” to recognise the worry, but also realise there’s nothing you can do about it.
  • Once the timer goes off, your worry moment is done; go about winding down for bed.


Anytime during the night or day that you worry, say to yourself ‘not now…. I’ll think about you during my worry moment.’ Your recognising the worry, but in a mindful way, and are training yourself to worry during specific times. If you do this technique regularly, you might notice that your mental chatter quietens down.

Podcast: The Perfect Day

How do our daytime habits affect our night-time sleep? In this podcast Dr. Katherina Lederle and elite sports sleep coach Nick Littlehales share their smart tips for the perfect round-the-clock sleep routine.



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Shelby Harris

Shelby Harris

Dr. Shelby Harris is a Rituals Ambassador for Sleep, and a licensed clinical psychologist. With years of experience treating a wide variety of sleep disorders she uses evidence-based methods and non-pharmacological treatments to improve sleep for everyone from babies to adults. Dr. Harris currently holds a dual academic senior-level appointment as Clinical Associate Professor at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in both the Neurology and Psychiatry Departments. and is board certified in Behavioral Sleep Medicine (BSM) by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. She’s also the author of The Women’s Guide to Insomnia.