It is such a great feeling to get a good night’s rest and wake up feeling refreshed, rejuvenated and ready to take on the day. When does that ever happen?! For many of us, sleep goes on the back burner as we try to get through our daily priorities. Or worse yet, many people collapse at the end of a long day, body exhausted but mind still reeling. When we are getting enough sleep everything on our plate seems a little bit easier to handle. We are in a better mood, more productive, and have an increased immune system. If sleep evades you, check out the tips below and see if they make a different.
1) Try to go to bed around the same time every night. I get that is not always doable (especially over the holidays), but if you go to bed and wake up around the same time your body and mind learn when they are supposed to shut down and recharge.
2) Create a bedtime routine. Have a bath, read a book, drink a warm beverage. Do whatever you find enjoyable and relaxing. Following a bedtime routine can train your body and mind to start relaxing and unwinding so sleep comes a little easier.
3) Get away from electronics. The blue light that is emitted from cell phones, tablets and TV’s can trigger our brain into thinking it is day time. Try to power down electronics at least a half an hour before bed.
4) Check out essential oils. The scent of lavender has calming and relaxing properties that can be really helpful for getting to sleep. Try put a few drops into a bath tub, or on a tissue that goes under your pillow.
5) If you are having trouble sleeping get up. It is only going to be more stressful to toss and turn and watch the clock. Instead try getting up and reading, or writing a list of the things that are on you mind. Try go back to bed when you start feeling sleepy.
6) Turn your clock around. Nothing makes it harder to sleep than watching the clock and thinking that you should be sleeping.
7) Talk to your Dr. or pharmacist about melatonin. It is a natural sleep aide, as it is the chemical our body naturally produces when we sleep. It is not addictive and most people don’t feel any side effects since we do produce it.
8) Avoid caffeine. Caffeine affects everyone differently so it is important to figure out your threshold. If you are having trouble getting to sleep, take a look at how much caffeine you are consuming and try to reduce or eliminate caffeine in the early afternoon to see if that encourages sleep.
Try out some of these tips to see if they make a difference in the quality and quantity of your sleep. Let me know if you have any tried and true sleep tricks that work for you!