10 Methods To Sleep Better: You Should Already Be Practicing Number 8!

So you just can’t get a decent nights sleep…I know this all too well.

I have tried herbal teas and all sorts of “natural” medications!

We are all aware of the dangers of sleep deprivation, but not so much about what we can and should do to get a better nights sleep.

Everyone not only deserves to get a good night’s sleep. While most people need seven to nine hours, it’s also important to realize that those need to be high quality hours of sleep.

Not all sleep is equal, but the good news is that if you follow these ten tips you will be far more likely to find (and enjoy) a truly great night’s sleep.

So without further ado, let’s start off with an obvious one…

1. Avoid Stimulants

Stimulants come in many different forms, and each person’s body can process them differently.

What doesn’t screw up one person’s sleep might wreak havoc with another’s.

To be clear; when I say stimulants I son’t mean just illegal stuff, I’m also talking about normal, everyday things that we can reduce such as:

  • Alcohol
  • Soda
  • Nicotine
  • Caffine
  • Sugar or any other simple carbs

This is not an exhaustive list, but these are all examples of stimulants that can hurt the quality of your sleep.

You can cut out most of these immediately and you will be surprised at the results! In fact, certain diets will even also help you to reduce your cravings of some things like sugar.

Many people are even surprised to realize how long these stimulants can have an effect on someone. Having sugar or caffeine even four or five hours before bedtime is enough to make some people restless.

Monitor your diet and avoid the common foods or drinks that come up when you don’t sleep well.

6 simple steps to better sleep infographic

2. Stick To A Consistent Schedule

People are creatures of habit, and the body thrives when it is working off of a schedule that it can consistently predict.

This means going to bed the same time every single night, getting up at the same time, and setting up bedtime and morning rituals.

And yes, this even means no sleeping in on the weekends or staying out late on a Friday night!

A consistent schedule needs to be consistent. Making an exception every single week means your body won’t adjust and you won’t get the most out of your rest.

3. No TV, Laptop, Or Phone Screens An Hour Before Bed

So I am pretty guilty with this one!

Studies have repeatedly shown that too much exposure to unnatural light and screens of all types mess with sleep. That’s not only if it is on in your room, but if you go to bed after looking at a computer screen or a smartphone, you are not going to get as good a rest.

Most people also find it harder to fall asleep quickly after long-term exposure to screen light right before bed, so cut that out at least an hour ahead of time.

If you must use an electrical item before bed, make sure to use a piece of software or an app that reduces the amount of blue light being emitted.

That said, there are some pretty interesting phone apps to help you sleep out there that could be worthwhile checking out.

4. Create A Repeatable Ritual

Rituals will help train your body to know when it is time to go to bed.

Make a ritual up that only happens before bed – not something that you also do in different parts of the day.

A minor snack (always the same) a couple hours before bed, moving to the bedroom, reading a book, meditating, etc. Whatever combination of things relaxes you but do the same combination each night in the same order to train your body.

That repeatable ritual will take some time to take hold, but once it does the results will be amazing. You are essentially using behavioral psychology on yourself to force your body into a certain state. 

Have you ever heard of Pavolov’s dog? or even The Big Bang Theory where Sheldon “trains” Penny to become quieter using positive reinforcement…that is this basically!

5. Be Aware Of Light

Lighting is important throughout the day.

Try to spend as much time in natural light as possible and during the day have the windows open and use natural light as long as you can before turning on electric lights in the evening.

Doing this will help you stay in tune with the natural cycle of light and dark during any season – and that will help you stay awake during the day and become tired at night while it is dark.

That is the kind of healthy sleep cycle you want to aiming for.

6. Practice Stress Management

Whether a couple hours before bed or as part of your before bed routine, some meditation, yoga, or even a daily workout earlier in the day can have a massive difference when it comes to the quality of your sleep.

Yoga is generally better a couple hours before bed or earlier in the day, while meditation can be done any time during the day, even multiple times a day, and makes a solid part of any really good pre-sleep ritual each night.

7. Avoid Traditional Self Medication

Drinking before bed will not make you sleep better, and while sleeping pills might knock you unconscious, studies have shown the sleep they bring is shallow and not a healthy long term solution for anyone suffering from any type of insomnia.

Avoid this type of self medication – it doesn’t get you the type of sleep that actually helps you.

8. Never Work From Your Bedroom

Stress is an absolute killer when it comes to sleep, and you can’t work and relax in the same place.

It’s just not possible nor is it healthy.

Keep the work out of the bedroom and keep it in the office. Even if you have to work at home, do it from a home office or living room. Don’t ever bring that over into your bedroom or your sleep will suffer.

9. Eat A Small Dinner

Have you ever heard of the saying:

Eat breakfast like a King, lunch like a Prince & dinner like a pauper...

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Making dinner a smaller meal while eating a bigger breakfast and lunch will not only give you more energy throughout the day, but being too full at night or having too many hormones going through your body can cause issues with being able to rest.

You may sleep, but if your body still has to work hard to process everything for another few hours after you lay down, then those hours of sleep aren’t going to be deep and friendly.

10. Learn Lucid Dreaming

Here’s an interesting one to finish off:

If nightmares have been an issue, leaning to lucid dream can help.

This is the practice of conditioning yourself to be conscious in your dreams and to be able to take control without waking up.

Lucid dreaming takes some time, but can lead to you being able to cut off every single nightmare as it starts and force peace and happiness on yourself as you sleep.

Finishing Up

Sleep is extremely important for the mental, emotional, and physical health of everyone.

Following these 10 tips will help you get to the root of almost any insomnia based problem and get the peaceful night of rest that you deserve!

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