Sleep is important, and getting a good night’s sleep refreshes both our mind and body. Unfortunately, getting quality sleep can sometimes be quite elusive. There are many factors that can affect how well we sleep. Although there are factors that may be beyond our general control, there are some things that you can do that will help make your sleep more restful and better.
Follow a sleep schedule
Implement a daily sleep schedule that you will follow religiously. Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day – including weekends and holidays. Forcing yourself to follow a schedule will train your body and brain to follow the same sleeping and waking cycle, which will promote better sleep. Remember though – if you don’t fall asleep within fifteen minutes of lying down, get back up and do something that will relax you. Go back to bed when you feel tired or sleepy.
Watch what you eat or drink
Don’t go to bed when you feel hungry or full. Feeling either may make you feel uncomfortable and prevent you from sleeping. You should also remember not to drink too much so you won’t have to wake up in the middle of the night to go to the toilet. Avoid taking caffeine or nicotine because these are stimulants. Alcohol is also a no-no. Even though it may make you feel sleepy, it may still disrupt your sleep later on in the night.
Start an wind-down ritual
Teach your body to pick up a signal to wind down by developing a ritual you’ll do before you go to bed. This could be something as simple as taking a bath or listening to some cool jazz tunes. Do this with the lights dimmed to make your body more receptive to the signal that it’s the end of the day and you’ll be sleeping soon.
Make your bedroom cozy and really conducive for sleeping. Have clean, soft sheets on your bed and make sure that it’s dark and quiet when you go to sleep.
Having a daily workout or physical activity can actually contribute to better sleep. Physical exertion will make you fall asleep faster and deeper. Just make sure that you don’t exercise too near your bed time because you may get too energized to fall asleep.
Stress is one of the factors that can prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep. Minimize the stressors in your life. There are many ways to do this and it depends on what the source of the stress is.
photo from mattressdiscounters.com