We’ve all been there: wide awake, mind is racing, wishing for nothing more than to simply fall asleep. Toss this way. Turn that way. The frustration of being awake doesn’t help and keeps you awake even more!
Sleep is one of the most important components of good health, as important as exercise and a good diet. And yet it is something that evades millions of people every night. There are many factors that add up to a poor night’s sleep from stress to a distracting environment to too much screen time.
The good news is that there are ways to establish good sleeping habits. If you struggle from lack of sleep, try incorporating these tips into your daily routine to help ensure you are getting the rest you need every night.
Stress will always get you in the end and is linked to all kinds of physical and mental ailments. Therefore, it’s a good idea to understand your stress and do something about it. If stress is keeping you awake at night, try to pinpoint exactly what is stressing you out. Then, and here’s the tricky part, tell yourself that there is nothing you can do about it this second. Before bed you can try a guided meditation, aromatherapy, a warm bath, whatever works! Do what you can to keep stress from taking over your life and keeping you awake.
Make your bed a sanctuary
Beds are for sleep, end of story. No pets, no food, no watching TV. Invest in a good quality mattress and comfortable linens. If your body knows to associate your bed with being comfortable and falling asleep, then that’s what it will do. Physiologically it will start to get ready for sleep as soon as you lay down and get cozy and before you know it… zzzzzzz….
Cut down on screen time
Studies have shown that looking at a brightly lit screen up to an hour before bedtime can disrupt the natural cycle of brain chemicals that tell you the day is done. Leave your phone in your bedside console and your computer in the living room and absolutely no TV in the bedroom. If you need to do something to help you wind down, try reading a book or writing in a journal (which might also help with stress).
No caffeine in the afternoon
You might be a heavy coffee drinker and think that it hardly has an effect on you, so an extra cup after work is no big deal. But caffeine can stay in the system long after you’ve consumed it, stimulating your nervous system. If you have trouble falling asleep and drink a lot of coffee, see what happens if you cut back.
All of our habits and behaviours collectively affect our health and can play a part in whether or not we have trouble falling asleep. Getting your heart rate up, doing cardio, strengthening your muscles, all add up to good health. And when your body is functioning optimally, you might have an easier time getting to sleep at night.
At the end of the day, your body really does want to operate well. It wants good sleep, and it wants to function, but all too often we place so much pressure on it to go beyond its limits. We put off sleep, choose an unhealthy snack over a healthy one, remain tired instead of well-rested, and for what?
To establish good sleep habits, listen to your body and give it a chance for some real down time. It’s really one of the best things you can do for your long term health.
If you need more advice on healthy sleep habits or if it’s time to invest in a high quality mattress so you can rest easy, stop by WR Mattress. Our friendly staff is always happy to help!