If you haven't already read our previous post on getting a good night's sleep, we highly suggest you do so. If you have already read it, then we're excited to bring you 5 more tips that you can use to get higher quality rest at night.
We all know that sleep is extremely important for our overall health and wellbeing. If we want to be able to show up in the world as our best selves, a good night's sleep is imperative. Sleep serves as the cornerstone for our health and longevity, and has an important role in the repair and recovery for our body and our minds. How many people do you know who act completely different when they don't get enough sleep at night? They become grumpy, irritable and reactive.
If you are someone that wants to be more mindful, empathetic and joyful, perhaps improving your sleep will be more beneficial than you expected. Here are our 5 tips for getting better sleep at night.
Are you someone who has the late night munchies? It’s totally understandable, but don’t let it be a surprise that eating close to your bedtime, or worse, after waking up in the middle of the night, has a significant impact on your quality of sleep.
Instead of allowing your body to use that time and energy towards repair and recovery, it ends up utilizing a lot of that energy towards digestion. This reduces the amount of time we spend in deep sleep and REM sleep, which are crucial for our overall physical and mental health. If possible, try to avoid eating 2-3 hours before your bedtime. This will allow your body to fully digest its food before transitioning over into a restful night of sleep.
Are the lights in your room or house on until the late hours of the night? If so, you might want to start making some changes to that. Perhaps add a dimmer if you don’t already have one. In the evening, it’s important that we aren’t exposed to too much bright light at night if we want to get restful sleep.
Even worse is exposure to blue light, which is emitted from our phones and televisions. Try to keep the lights in your house as low as possible at least one hour prior to bed. This will allow for a more easy and natural transition to falling asleep.
There’s arguably no better way to help you fall asleep than reading a book in bed. I’m sure you had a time at least once in your life where you ended up falling asleep while reading a book. Reading helps us calm our minds, which often times tend to be racing with thoughts out of our control. Obviously, meditation can be a great antidote for this, but if you are looking for a solution that doesn’t require quite as much discipline, reading is a great alternative. It helps to relieve anxiety and gets us to stop thinking about all of our problems and worries. So, next time your thoughts are running wild and you can’t seem to fall asleep, try picking up a book and reading for 10-15 minutes.
There are a lot resources out there that show it is better to sleep in a room with a cool temperature. Sleeping with a cool environment helps us produce an optimal amount of melatonin, which is the primary chemical responsible for inducing sleep cycles.
Now, this doesn’t mean you should be sleeping in an ice bath at night - the ideal temperature to sleep in is anywhere from 60 - 67 degrees Fahrenheit. If you live in an area that is usually really hot and you don’t have an AC system, some ways you can cool down are by using a fan, sleeping naked, or sleeping without bed sheet covers. So, instead of trying to be all warm and cozy at night, try to keep things cool so you can achieve a more restful sleep at night.
If you haven’t already read our article on aromatherapy massage, you can find it here. Aside from aromatherapy massage, there is just plain old fashioned aromatherapy. The two primary types of aromatherapy are the use of candles and essential oils.
We have a written several articles on essential oils already (examples here and here), but the essential oil we recommend the most for sleep is lavender. You can either use an essential oil diffuser in your room to diffuse the lavender, or you can simply rub the oil on your forehead and temples. You may even consider adding it to your bath at night. Aromatherapy, such as the use of lavender or sweet scented candles, helps to bring about a sense of peace and calmness. It allows us to more easily unwind and fall into a deep state of sleep.
As we mentioned, sleep is incredibly important for our health. It serves as the cornerstone of our overall well being, and is often times the determining factor in whether or not we are able to show up as our best selves in the world everyday. If you feel you haven’t been getting good enough sleep, and it’s taking a toll on, try the 5 tips we’ve listed in this article. We hope they help!
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