When you start looking into your health and lifestyle, the one thing you’ll keep see being mentioned is getting a good night’s sleep.
I’m not going to tell you how much sleep is best as I do believe that whilst 8 hours sleep would be good for us all, some of us have busy lives with jobs and children so not everything is possible. The following tips are things that I try to keep in my routine but as a working mum of two I do understand how difficult it can be. Take one tip and go with it for now and see what happens.
Try to be consistent
Going to bed at the same time every night can help to form a routine, I’m not saying that you have to fall asleep at exactly that minute but set yourself a time when you will be in bed every night and stick to it (where possible). The same can be said for setting a time to wake up in the morning too. I know you want that Sunday lie in but getting up at the usual time doesn’t mean you can’t still be lazy. On Sundays I still have my pyjamas on and I’ll curl up with my book and enjoy some me time. Bliss.
Try to fit in a workout into your day, it doesn’t have to be long and even ten minutes is enough to help aid your sleep later on. If fitting in a workout is too much for every day try to take the stairs instead of the lift. Every little bit counts. What I have started to do is a little yoga before bedtime, just the lighter poses and concentrating more on stretching my body so it feels relaxed and ready to sleep. Also make sure to fit in your water intake through the day, your skin will really thank you for it.
You won’t get to sleep if you’re anxious or stressed. Take some time for yourself and run a bath, read a book or get writing in your diary. Just let yourself wind down naturally and you’ll feel more relaxed and able to sleep. This works the same way as being consistent with when you are going to bed. It all forms routine and soon enough it becomes harder to break so it becomes your normal bedtime routine. Some people meditate before they go to bed so that they have a clear mind before they go to sleep. This is what I have chosen to do after a year or so of meditating when I first woke up. I find the release of the stress of the day is better relieved at night time and I can get to sleep much quicker.
Sometimes it can be good to also use this time to write your list of jobs for the next day so that you don’t wake up later worrying about everything you have to do the next day. You feel ready to end the day and wait for the new day to start.
Turn off your electronics
It seems pretty simple but turning off the TV or stop checking twitter late at night can really help you to fall asleep quicker. Substitute your gadget for a real book or a magazine and you’ll be surprised how quickly you fall off to sleep. Try turning off your electronics at least an hour before bedtime and see the difference that it brings.
Avoid caffeine before bedtime
It seems like an obvious tip but you’ll be surprised how many people forget this before trying to get to sleep. You might love your coffee (and you really should cut down if you do) but try not to drink any caffeine a couple of hours before bedtime. You don’t need the extra stimulation to stay awake. The same theory goes for big meals, try to eat your meals earlier and again let this also become a routine too.
So that’s my tips for a better night’s sleep. They might not all work for everyone but I’m sure there’s at least a couple there for everyone. Let us know how you get on with these tips and if you have any others to share, please pop them in the comments below to help others (and me!)
by Valerie S.