What we do before we go to sleep can have a profound effect on our success (unfortunately, about 60 million Americans suffer from insomnia) – here are some bedtime rituals for better sleep.
#1 Turn Down The Lights
Forget a sleeping pill, nature’s sleeping pill is the darkness. Darkness – which is simply the absence of light – gives your body the cue to release the hormone melatonin, which gives you the blissful feeling of tiredness and causes you to unwind. Turning down the lights approximately 90 minutes before you go to sleep can help you doze off a treat, according to San Francisco-based psychologist Steve Orma, PsyD.
#2 Cool It Down
By cooling down your room to around 60°F to 70°F (15°C-20°C), you’re in the perfect conditions to nod off and get some great sleep, according to the National Sleep Foundation. This is because the cooler your body is, the sleepier you become. If you find yourself feeling too hot, or you’re covered in too many layers of blanket, then crack a window open or use a fan to cool it down, else you’ll just be too restless and won’t get yourself a good night sleep.
#3 Put On Your Swannies
By putting on your Swannies blue light blocking glasses on 90 minutes before you usually fall asleep, you will block out all of the artificial light from your phone, laptop or TV that you use. This means that you can use these necessitate 21st-century luxuries without any side-effects on your sleep.
This is really important. The truth about blue light is that it’s only existed since the 19th century, and so our bodies are really not adapted to having this glaring light on us before we go to sleep, which thus has a big impact on our body’s release of melatonin, the sleep hormone. This leads us to feel less than fresh the next day, and unable to perform at optimal level. Swannies blue light glasses are really the answer here, plus, they look cool.
#4 Take a Hot Bath
It removes the day’s residue, relaxes the muscles, soothes, and induces sleep. (Try soaking in a magnesium-rich Epsom salt bath.) Soaking in a warm, hot bath at the end of the day will relax the muscles, bring you a calming presence of the mind and will induce you into a sleepy state. A great thing to try could be magnesium-rich Epsom bath salt, as magnesium helps us feel more sleepy.
#5 Practice a Relaxing Activity
Yoga, reading or meditation are great ways for you to relax your body and mind and relieve yourself of any cortisol that you may have accumulated over the course of the day. It’s also a great opportunity for you to reflect on life – some of my best ideas and realizations have come from pre-bed time reflection time. Whatever it is for you, you want to get into that sleepy, yielding state so that you can get some great shut-eye and wake up in the morning, ready to crush your goals.
#6 Only Use Bed For Sleep and Sex
Our brain is very clever, and we create very powerful neural-associations with our environment, which, for example, is why we link our dream holiday destination with happiness. Therefore, if we use our bed for just sleep and sex, then we will condition ourselves to fall asleep in this environment easier.
#7 Limit Your Use of Electrical Devices
Unless you have a pair of Swannies blue-light blocking glasses (see above), then your Netflix binge or your thumb workout (*cough*, Instagram, *cough*) is really affecting your sleep because it is restricting your body’s release of melatonin. It’s essentially telling your body, which is an evolutionary machine, that it’s still light outside.
Grab your pair of Swannies ~ Blue Light Blocking Glasses Today for a Better Sleep Tonight!
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By Joshua Roobottom
Leesa A. Wheeler, CNHP, CHS, CMSAT, CIC
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