Getting a good night’s sleep is key to performing at your best. Your body needs to rest and we have some simple tips to help you set up for success.
The quality of your sleep can be drastically influenced by your bedtime routine, bedroom environment, lighting, temperature, and amount of time spent on screens. Creating an environment and a consistent routine that allows you to improve your sleep is such a low effort/high reward investment in your overall health and wellness.
If you are someone who regularly wakes up throughout the night, or feels lethargic and irritable in the mornings, this could be a sign that there is room for improvement in your own sleep hygiene.
Here are five ways you may be able to improve your sleep:
- Take a tech-free hour: Giving your eyes a rest from screens is a big part of allowing your brain to start switching off before bed. The more technology we indulge in at night, the more we stimulate our brain making it harder to fall asleep with ease. Try turning your phone to “do not disturb” mode at least one hour before bed and swap your social media scrolling and email checking for reading a book. You can even schedule this so your phone does it automatically.
- Avoid large meals right before bed: Eating a big meal right before bed can often increase your body temperature and can cause sleep disturbances whilst metabolizing the food. It doesn’t mean you should skip dinner, just aim to eat at least one to two hours before lights out.
- Turn down the lights: Just like our phones, lighting in your home can be stimulating. Allow your body to adjust naturally to the sunrise and sunset and dim lights within the home when the sun goes down. This can help to improve your circadian rhythm.
- Keep it cool, quiet, and dark: No, we’re not talking about more throw cushions! The ideal bedroom temperature is 65 Fahrenheit. If you’re too hot or cold this can lead to a very disrupted sleep. Blackout curtains help to get your body into a healthy circadian rhythm by blocking any light from outside. A comfortable eye mask does the job just as well. Removing any digital clocks that beam light should also be covered or dimmed as it too can be a disruption.
- Have a bedtime routine: Creating a habitual routine for the hour before bed can really help to prime yourself for sleep. Also, if you can go to bed at roughly the same time each night you will help your body naturally fall asleep each night. Your routine might also include things like brushing your teeth, moisturizing with calming scents like lavender, and even a short meditation practice that can be helpful to slow the mind.