With all the stress the typical person encounters on a day-to-day basis, it can become a challenge to get adequate rest and rejuvenation. Our diet, lifestyle choices, work schedules, and family commitments are only a few of the reasons we end up going to bed too stressed to fully relax. Unfortunately, the mounting stress and poor sleep takes its toll on our body and mind and in time our health and thinking can become impaired.
The good news is that there are several steps you can take to improve the quality of your sleep.
This may be obvious, but that late night cup of tea while watching TV, or cup of coffee to stay up to finish some work will come back to haunt you at bedtime.
Don’t eat before bedtime
Allow for at least a couple of hours after eating before you try to sleep so that your digestive system has time to function. While the body’s working, it won’t be able to relax.
Try to stick to a schedule
This will allow your mind and body to relax to an internal timing you set. Make sure you keep to the schedule on the weekends as well or you’ll end up waking up late and tired, not to mention throwing off your schedule.
Sleep only at night
Avoid long naps during the day. Limit short power naps to 20 minutes. If you sleep too much during the day you’ll just keep yourself up at night.
Although it stimulates the body, it actually aids in sleeping. Getting your daily dose of exercise during the morning or afternoon will coax your body into resting and recovering so you’ll sleep better at night.
Right before bed, take some time to calm your mind and relax your body. Going to bed stress free will help you get to sleep faster and sleep better.
Silence or soft music?
This is a matter of personal preference. Some people can’t sleep with noise around them, but for others, calm peaceful music or nature sounds are the perfect antidote for stress. This is one to experiment with for yourself.
Take a hot shower or bath
Right before bedtime, this can relieve tension and help you get restful sleep.
Use your bed only for sleeping
Don’t read or work in bed. Let your mind and body associate going to bed only with going to sleep.
Try a cup of chamomile tea
This herbal tea is known for its calming effects so a cup before bedtime may help you unwind.
These are simple techniques that can have a profound effect not only on how we sleep, but how we awaken in the morning and perform at work. Using these as a starting point to better sleep will be a positive step in the right direction towards better health.