Having trouble getting enough z’s each night? It can be frustrating when night after night you lay awake wondering why you can’t fall asleep. Well, join the club because it is believed that 30% of adults suffer from the inability to fall asleep. This problem has impacts on our health, our job performance, our relationships, and our happiness. Here are 5 great tips to help you sleep.
# 1 Ditch the Tech, Blue Light Isn’t Your Bedtime Pal:
It is well documented that that mindless scrolling through your phone or answering late night emails decreases your chances of easily dozing off. This is due to a few elements. Number 1 is the blue light factor. It has been proven that the blue light that radiates from electronic devices such as phones, laptops, televisions and tablets is a type of light that our brains interpret as daylight. This stimulates and changes hormones in the brain, making it difficult to drift into sleep mode when our brain still thinks it’s daytime!
The problem lies with the use of our smartphones being so ingrained in the daily activities of our lives and they are always at an arm’s reach. It makes sense that the temptation to check social media sites, work emails, and news headlines is often too strong to resist. As a result, you might feel energized from interacting with others or stressed out by something that you read when you should actually be relaxing. To counteract this try keeping the bedroom a technology free zone at least an hour before bed. This gives us time to unwind and block unnecessary distractions. If using your phone is a must before bed, like for setting your alarm cock, try using “night shift” mode or other apps that block blue light.
# 2 Set the Ambiance with some Bedtime Rituals:
Setting up some bedtime rituals to follow before nodding can help you release the day’s tensions and also signal to your body that it’s time to get ready for sleep. One great idea is to use aromatherapy to set a relaxing ambiance every night. We love diffusers and essential oils, which give off amazing smells as well provides some humidity to dry air. If it’s summer or you live in a humid environment, try our lavender-filled eye pillow. The smell of lavender just exudes sleep! The dreamy scent immediately calms the mind, slows the heart rate and decreases blood pressure. Another great idea is to try spooning with your partner (or pillow)! Spooning for a while before sleep helps increase “feel good hormones” and helps us to feel comforted and supported. Also, try making it a habit to drink a glass of water before bed, with maybe even a few drops of CBD. This helps us to stay hydrated during sleep and CBD has also been shown to decrease anxiety.
Come up with your own bedtime rituals and test them out. You’ll be surprised how keeping a routine before bed can help you fall asleep faster and sleep better!
#3 Write it Down – Keep Your Mind from Racing:
Ever find that your mind is racing before you fall asleep? Maybe the stresses of work or personal woes are on your mind? It can be very helpful to keep a journal and write down everything at least two hours before you fall asleep, which in turn will clear your mind and prepare you for sleep. Writing 3 full pages a day in a notebook has been shown to improve creativity and help you sleep better, as you are clearing your mind of all the “junk” that has been building up. It doesn’t matter what you write – a journal about your day, problems you are facing at work, creative ideas that have been brewing, or about that fight you had with your partner. Write it down and get it off your mind, you’ll be surprised about how much better you feel!
#4 Practice Breathing:
Slow and controlled breathing has been proven to aid in relaxing the body and mind, helping put you into a sleep-ready state. Focused deep breathing is an important aspect for meditation and will help to center yourself. To do this get into a comfortable position and turn all your attention to your natural breathing pattern and feel the air enter and leave your nose. You want to be breathing from your diaphragm, not your chest. If your mind drifts try to focus your attention back to your breathing. You can also visualize your breath entering and circulating through your body before allowing it to exit with all the day’s built up tension. When making this a regular practice, it will also help for you to breathe slower during the daytime. Slow deep breathing all day helps to keep us in a calm state, can increase energy levels, and makes you more mindful of your body.
#5 Temperature Control and Try Sleeping Naked:
Keeping your body at a cool temperature while you sleep is a crucial factor for gaining good night’s rest. Our body’s core temperature needs to drop 2-3 degrees to achieve a deep level of sleep. Ensuring the body enters deep sleep each night is necessary for properly regulating our circadian rhythm, which determines when your body is ready to go to sleep and when it is ready to wake up.
When your body’s core temperature is lower you feel more drowsy, and when your body’s core temperature is higher you feel more alert – making it difficult to sleep. We suggest trying to sleep “au naturale”! We are not being cheeky, sleeping naked will ensure you don’t get too hot under the covers. Another great idea for a lower body temperature is to have a warm bath about an hour before bed. This may seem like a strange idea but the change in temperature created when your body is dried off and suddenly out of the warm water will begin the cooling process.
Also choosing bedding which is breathable and kind to your skin, such as 100% organic Bamboo Lyocell Fabric, is super important. Bamboo lyocell is thermo regulating, which means it releases heat and is one of the coolest sheets on earth!