Do you need some natural sleep tips on how to get a good night’s rest? We all want to feel emotionally balanced, productive, on the ball and full of vitality. How we feel during the day often depends on how well we are sleeping. Try some of the following sleep tips, and identify the ones that help improve your sleep.
So how do we get a good night’s sleep?
The reality is we live in a 24/7 society, which makes it increasingly hard to control both the quality and length of our sleep. One way to assist this goal, is to follow healthy sleep habits, and they really can make a huge difference to how you feel during your awake hours.
Sleep tip 1: Clock off – clock on
Keeping a regular sleep-wake schedule is one way to help reset your body’s internal clock. Head to bed at a normal time or when you feel tired. This will help avoid the toss-and-turn moments that can happen if you go to bed too early or even too late.
Sleep tip 2: Wipe out weekend sleep-ins
Keeping your sleep clock the same will help avoid the 2 day jet-lag you can feel after you have a late night. Instead of trying to catch up on sleep in the morning, rise and shine at your normal time and try and catch up during the day by having a day nap. This helps you repay the missed sleep without disrupting your body’s natural sleep-wake schedule.
Sleep tip 3: Get some sunshine
Sun exposure has been said to help with your sleep-wake schedule, as it has a naturally occurring hormone. Wake up to the sun, spend more time outside, open your house up to more light and you will benefit from this hormone. At night avoid bright screens and late night TV, and it is also beneficial to make your room as dark as possible.
Sleep tip 4: Get active
The most powerful sleep benefits come from vigorous exercise, but even walking will deliver sleep benefits. You will need to be exercising regularly and for a solid period of time before you get the full sleep benefits.
Sleep tip 5: Be smart with food and drink
What you do during the day, in terms of your food consumption, can have a lasting affect during your sleep hours. Try to avoid the following:
- Alcohol before bed
- Coffee & smoking
- Over eating
- Drinking too much before bedtime
Sleep tip 6: Relaxation techniques
Unpacking your mind is very common when you get into bed. Your whole day can flash through your mind and keep you awake. What you did today, what you are doing tomorrow, it can keep repeating itself for hours. Try some of the following techniques:
- Controlled breathing: try the 4-7-8 technique
- Squeeze and relax: breath in through your nose, squeeze your toes and release
- Visualisation: use at least 3 senses to take you to a place of contentment
- Rewind your day: go over all the small tasks in reverse to clear your mind
For a more in depth review of twelve tried and tested sleep relaxation techniques click here.
Sleep tip 7: Perfect your bed temperature
What we sleep in, including our pyjamas, sheets, blankets, mattress toppers and even underwear can have a huge effect on the temperature at which we sleep. Choose items that are breathable, comfortable, and easy to move in. If you are always cold in bed, try bed socks and flannelette pyjamas for added warmth.
Sleep tip 8: Getting back to sleep
Sometimes the most frustrating part about sleep issues, is waking during the night and finding it difficult getting back to sleep again. Waking during the night is quite common, and watching the clock can build stress and anxiety that fuels insomnia. Try some of these sleep tips to get back some rest:
- Focus on relaxing, not sleeping
- Have a notebook beside your bed to download any tasks that need doing
- Try reading, without bright lights
- Practice your breathing techniques, and focus on your body rather than your head