Are you tired? Your sleep patterns and daily habits may need some TLC.
There’s no denying that we live in a culture that prioritizes productivity, the constant ‘go-go-go’ and making personal sacrifices to be as productive as possible.
So when we need to GET ISH DONE (which seems like always), what seems to be the first to be sacrificed? Very often our sleep.
Ironically, sleep is one of those things that would actually help us to be more productive (and more awesome people to be around) in the long run if it were treated with the respect it deserves. But we won’t go down that rabbit hole now.
Sleep is a time of rest and recovery, which may sound obvious, but it’s much more important to prioritize than most of us know or acknowledge.
And please remember: prioritizing sleep does not make you a lazy, selfish or unproductive person. It makes you a rockstar human! Let’s start looking at sleep as an essential, sacred tool to make us healthier and more awesome.
Below are some tips and tools that you can use to be a winner at sleep. By doing so, you will have a deeper sleep, wake up more refreshed, have better midday energy, more mental clarity, be able to show up for your job/spouse/kids/friends better, and, perhaps even experience some natural weight loss to boot, since sleep is a key player in the function of weight loss.
13 Ways To Win At Sleep
- Wake up and go to sleep at the same time everyday. Ideally, asleep by 10:30pm and up around 6:30am. A routine is super-helpful in establishing healthy hormonal patterns.
- Use a salt lamp in your bedroom as a way to reset your circadian clock. Turn it on in the morning and after the sun goes down in the evening. Candles are also a great option (and rather romantic, too!). Avoid full spectrum light, especially flourescent or LED lighting after sunset.
- Be sure to get morning or midday sunlight as this will help increase serotonin (the ‘feel good’ hormone) and melatonin (the sleep hormone). This, of course, is more difficult on gray days, but do your best. If you live in an area that gets very little sunlight or you experience severe winter blues, you may want to consider using a therapy light like the one here.
- Eliminate exposure to blue light from smartphones, tablets, computers and television at least 1 hour before designated bedtime. Go old-school and READ A BOOK, y’all!
- Sleep in completely dark room. This one is very important, and it always surprises me how many people don’t do this. You can test the darkness of your room by putting your hand in front of your face when it’s dark. Can you see it? If yes, then your room is not dark enough. If your bedroom is full of light pollution, blackout blinds/curtains are a great solution.
- Avoid excessive fluid intake after 8pm. We don’t want our beautiful deep sleep interrupted by a million pees!
- Avoid overstimulation in the evening. This can come from everyday activities you might not even consider, like opening mail, watching the news or a scary movie or listening to loud music.
- Avoid checking and responding to email in the evening. Bad idea.
- Settle any conflicts before going to bed. Then hug it out.
- Use lavender essential oil or a relaxation blend to help promote calm and rest. Diffusers on your nightstand are great!
- Practice deep breathing exercises before bed to help you relax. You don’t have to be a yogi and meditate for a long time; even 5 simple deep breaths can be very relaxing.
- If you must use a computer, download the free software Iris here as a digital light filter for your screen.
- Put your phone on airplane mode (ideally keep it in a different room entirely) and turn your wifi off overnight. To automate wifi on/off time, you can purchase an inexpensive light timer and plug your wireless router into it. We have our timer set to turn off at 12:30am and on at 6:30am.
If you incorporate the above tips and tricks into your life, you are sure to be experiencing a better sleep in no time!
For more tips, tricks and tools on improving your sleep, check out these articles from two of my fave sleep promotors (and biohackers):
1. Bulletproof ‘How to Hack Your Sleep – The Art and Science of Sleeping’
2. The Model Health Show ‘21 Tips to Get the Best Sleep Ever’
She is here to preach what she practices and help you to prepare amazing whole food meals from scratch, grow your own organic food and optimize your lifestyle and environment to promote the most vibrant, glowing and energetic you.
Laura is currently based in Dundas, Ontario, Canada but works remotely with people from all over the world!
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