Sleep is immensely important. Good sleep is the foundation for great physical/mental health and just a better overall mindset. There’s nothing like waking up feeling rested and refreshed. Getting a good night’s sleep is vital for our health and our life. But, when you can’t seem to get adequate shut eye, it can be frustrating. Read on to discover easy tips and tricks for getting a good night’s sleep.
- Avoid caffeine late in the day.
Drinking caffeine after 3 pm is shown to cause trouble sleeping. You might not think that cup of joe at 6 pm will effect your bedtime, but, it will. Caffeine inhibits our ability to relax and sleep. Caffeine stays in our bodies for several hours after consuming, so, it’s best to avoid caffeine after 3 pm in order to get some good sleep.
- Have a comfortable bedroom temperature.
The temperature of your bedroom is key to ensuring a good night’s sleep. If your bedroom is too hot, you will not be able to get restful sleep. Everyone has a different opinion about the ideal bedroom temperature. Essentially, it depends based on your body and your preferences. But, keeping the temperature between 65 – 70 degrees Fahrenheit is the recommendation for a good bedroom temperature. So, set your thermostat around that number before going to bed, and you’ll wake up feeling like a new person!
- Do relaxing activities before bed.
Doing stressful activities such as school or work assignments before bed isn’t recommend. Getting in the habit of doing relaxing things before bed can take some time and practice, but, it should become a part of your nightly routine. Relaxing activities before bed include practice meditation, mindfulness, journaling, or reading a book. All of those activities will get you in the right mindset for sleep.
- Exercise daily.
Exercising daily is vital to our overall physical and mental health. But, exercise is also a significant part of getting a good night’s sleep. A common misconception is that you have to do strenuous exercise. That simply isn’t true. If you’re not a fan of strenuous exercise, simply doing light exercise will help you sleep better. But, a VERY important thing to keep in mind is that exercise should NOT be done before bed. Exercising before bed will have the opposite effect. Incorporate some exercise in your daily routine, and you’ll soon see your sleep start to improve.
- Don’t take long naps.
Taking a short nap occasionally can help give you some extra energy. But, napping for a long time has the opposite effect. Naps that exceed 30 minutes will hinder your ability to sleep throughout the night. If you’re in the mood for a nap, ensure that it’s 30 minutes or less otherwise, it might begin to affect your shut eye.
- Manage your negative thoughts and worries.
Worrying or excessive negative thinking has been shown to cause problems sleeping. Managing stress and anxiety is a very important in getting good sleep. Some ways of ensuring that those worrisome or negative thoughts do not take over your mind throughout the night are writing down your thoughts and feelings, reminding yourself to focus on the present moment and incorporating simple mindfulness in your nightly routine, and practicing deep breathing.
- Go to sleep and wake up at the same time each day.
Going to bed and waking up at the same time each day helps to stabilize your body’s internal clock. Doing so can prove to be difficult at times, especially during weekends. But, it will make all the difference in your sleep. If you thoroughly commit to going to sleep and waking up at the same time each day, you will notice how much your sleep has improved. Irregular sleep and wake time are not good for your circadian rhythm. When you set you follow a specific sleep and wake time, your melatonin levels and your circadian rhythm become balanced, thus enabling you to have a good night’s sleep.
- Lessen your exposure to blue light in the evening.
Blue light exposure in the evening threatens our sleep. It effects our circadian rhythm and throws out internal clock off balance. Blue light is emitted through laptops, smartphones, televisions, and other technology. There are many different things you can do to reduce your exposure to blue light in the evenings. First and foremost, try to lessen the time you spend using technology in the evening hours. Other things you can do include wearing blue light blocking glasses and downloading a blue light blocking app. But, overall, the best thing to do to lessen your exposure to blue light is to stop using technology 1 – 2 hours before bedtime.