Yesterday I wrote about how important sleep is and today I’m going to give you some tips on how to sleep just a little bit better (post here in case you missed it)! If you follow the tips I’ve been using for quite a while now, you should see an improvement in no time!
Create a relaxing environment
I really like string lights. I think they are beautiful and I’d so much rather hang out in a room that’s lighted with string lights than bright overhead lights or dull floor lamps. The second picture is of a cool thing Wyatt bought me from Amazon. I use it EVERY single night. I’ve had to tear it apart a few times to get it working again, but it wasn’t hard to fix and it’s been working for months (knock on wood) without me having to interfere. It has a timer and shut off automatically, so you can leave it on when you go to sleep! So relaxing. I’m also a sucker for snuggling with multiple stuffed animals and blankets.
Set bedroom rules
Use your bed only for sleeping – no video games, no work, no eating. Try to make sure you’re not sitting your laptop/tablet/phone for hours on end while laying in bed. If you train yourself to only sleep in your bed, it trains your body to become tired and ready for sleep when you get into bed (maybe that’s just me). Years ago, I would try to do as much as I could while I was in bed. I did homework, I applied for jobs, I even used to do my makeup on my bed just so I could be in it just a little longer. But this made my bed (and my surrounding room) a place that I associated with stressful things, and it made it hard to fall asleep.
No tiny glowing screens!
Shut off all electronics at LEAST a half hour before you go to bed. Seriously. Don’t play Candy Crush in a dark room two minutes before you plan on sleeping. Don’t watch a full season of Full Metal Alchemist on your tablet before you fall asleep. Don’t read the news on your phone at bed time. It’s hard, I know, but you have to do it. Studies have proven time and time again that the light from all of the screens we look at throughout the day really do have an effect on our sleep quality. Start small – no computer for a few days before bed, no phone the next couple of days. I try to stick to this as much as possible because I really can tell the difference when I wake up the next morning.
Drink some lemon water
Or just plain ice water. I have the bladder of a mouse, so I usually have to get up early in the morning so I try to cut off fluids about an hour before I go to bed. I do make sure I drink plenty before that though! Stay hydrated!
Listen to something relaxing
I really have a hard time falling asleep in total silence, and I hate the glare from TV screens (which is why I’ve pretty much never had one in my room. Also I just graduated college a year ago and my loans don’t pay themselves). I used to always listen to music when I went to sleep, but I like to change it up sometimes. Some of my favorite things to listen to are Pink Floyd (usually makes me have crazy dreams), classical music, or a nature sounds app. Some of the ones I use are pictured below (Relax Melodies, Relax Meditation, Relax Rain). I set timers and play these apps on my tablet. They do the same thing as a sound machine, but for a lot cheaper (see: free versions).
Get in a routine
I think this is one of the most important things that you can do to help yourself sleep better. Pick a time to go to bed each and every night. If it varies because of your work shifts or something like that, that’s fine, but do your best to stick to a schedule. Find things that help you wind down and do them! I personally like to straighten up my apartment, get my shower, and hang out for a bit before I go to bed. Some people like to read every night before they go to bed. Just find something that you can do every night before you go to bed and do it.
Seriously, this isn’t even something I should have to write, but I will. Don’t drink caffeine before you go to bed. It will keep you up all night, and you will toss and turn and get a terrible night’s sleep.
I hope that if you follow some of these tips, you can find yourself feeling more rested in the morning and ready for the day ahead!