These 5 things to do before bed will help you sleep better and wake up feeling more rested and ready for the day.
The truth is, many of us are not getting the quality sleep we so desperately need. Check out these alarm-ing (pun intended) statistics:
50% of people get less than 6 hours of sleep per night.
When sleep-deprived, you’re more likely to have poorer working memory and will have a 50% slower response time and a lower accuracy rate on simple tasks.
The following five things to do before bed can help you sleep better. Perhaps one of them (or more) will work for you!
1. Check your environment.
Thermostat to 60 degrees? Check. Room-darkening shades drawn? Check. White noise machine on? Check. Eye mask on? Check. Ear plugs in? Check. As extensive as it may sound, this is my mental checklist before lights out each and every night. Surveying your environment for distractions of all kinds can make a big difference. Which of the above could possibly help your sleep?
2. Exercise (walking counts!)
I don’t have to guess whether or not I sleep better on nights when I’ve exercised that day – I know I do. And by the way, exercise doesn’t have to mean anything vigorous. For me, it means an hour-long brisk walk in the park.
3. Rethink those cat naps.
As lovely as naps can be (and for some they work wonders), I’ve learned that naps detract from my quality of sleep at night. If you’re napping routinely and find your nighttime sleep isn’t as high quality as you’d like, try pressing through the day without that cat nap and see if things improve.
4. Avoid screentime an hour before bed.
It’s hard, I know, but try this as an experiment: charge your phone in a room other than your bedroom and for one hour before you go to sleep, stick to reading a book/magazine or talking with your partner in bed. This helps to wind down your brain and distances you a bit from the work, etc. that can occupy your mind in the wee hours. For more info on this topic, check out my post How Technology May Be Ruining Your Sleep.
5. Try strongly brewed chamomile tea.
Chamomile is widely regarded as a mild tranquilizer and sleep-aid. To give it a try, steep two bags of chamomile tea in 1/4 cup of boiling water (so it’s very strong and won’t make for bathroom trips in the night).
Above all – make sleep a priority! For as long as I can remember, I’ve needed 8 hours of sleep a night. I decided early on to put sleep first for one reason alone: time and time again I find that when I get less than the sleep I need, my work suffers both in quality and quantity. As tempting as it can be to get up earlier and squeeze in that extra hour or two of work, I’ve learned that I’m better off (and my business is better off) if I get the sleep I need, and then work harder and smarter in my waking fully-rested hours.
And if all else fails, try listening to this sleep hypnosis audio (one of many available on Youtube). 🙂
What helps you to sleep better? Let me know in the comments below.