My sleep pattern has been terrible since we got home from Europe and I have been pushing my bed time back later and later. This week it finally caught up with me! I’ve been sleepy, I haven’t been able to focus at work, I struggle to get out of the bed in the mornings and I don’t wake up feeling refreshed. I need a good nights sleep to function properly so this week I have been working on my sleep to I can get back to my normal, well-rested self. So today for my Friday Five I thought I would share with you five tips for a good night’s sleep.
1. Get a routine and stick to it
I used to have a great sleep routine and Europe ruined it! I realistically need to be in bed by 9.30pm, 10pm is the absolute latest, so I can get up for work between 6am and 6.30am. I have been in bed by 9pm every night this week and have been reading until I am sleepy. Setting a routine for your sleep means that your body will get used to the routine and you will be able to get the sleep you need!
2. Enforce a ‘digital sundown’ and no screens in the bedroom rule
The artificial light from laptops, tvs, smartphones and iPads actually signals to our brains that we need to be awake and alert. Having a digital sundown for at least an hour before your bedtime allows the ‘darkness cues’ to work their magic and for us to actually feel sleepy. Having a no screens in the bedroom rule will help with the digital sundown, but will also stop you getting distracted by them when you should be unwinding. Bedrooms should be a relaxing place and that bright light from your iPhone is definitely not relaxing!
3. Take a warm shower or bath before bed
Having a shower or bath raises your body temperature slightly and your body will rapidly cool off once you get out, mimicking the natural drop in body temperature that happens when your brain is getting ready for sleep. Doing something that mimics the way your brain reacts to going to sleep will help the process along.
4. Watch your food and drink
Make sure you aren’t eating large meals right before bed, drinking caffeine after about 3pm or drinking too much alcohol. All these things can interrupt both your ability to get to sleep but also your quality of sleep. So eat lighter meals in the evening, and go easy on the coffee and wine!
5. Keep a notepad on your bedside table
If you’re someone whose mind starts to race as soon as you hit the mattress you need to keep a notepad (and pen!) on your bedside table. If you think of something important, write it down and then lay back down and focus on going to sleep. I have a cute one from Kikki K on my bedside table. If once you’ve written everything down your mind is still racing try focusing on progressively relaxing each of your muscles from your toes up to your head. Actively thinking of something will calm your mind and allow you to relax enough to sleep.
I hope these five tips will help you sleep better this weekend! What are your top tips for a good night’s sleep?
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