Who doesn’t want to sleep better? As a society, we’re not getting nearly enough of it: roughly two-thirds of adults throughout the developed world fail to get the recommended 8 hours of sleep each night. Nonetheless, there’s nothing quite like quality sleep to support the immune system (why else do we rest when we’re under the weather?), increase energy, and lead to a more vibrant day (and life) ahead.
In conjunction with the launch of our new sleep formulas (Mental Tranquility for the stressed sleeper, Physical Tranquility for those that sleep hot and bothered), we’re recommending that you create a personal “sleep ritual” that will help maintain higher quality, more consistent and less interrupted sleep, night after night.
We’re creatures of habit: break some of your old habits, create some new, and become more alert, awake and alive for the two-thirds of your life that are not spent in the bedroom.
How to a create an Effective Sleep Ritual
- Your phone or other portable “blue light“ gadgets do not come into the bedroom: the LED blue light emitted from these devices has a tendency to suppress your nighttime melatonin, impacting when you fall to sleep (in other words, your phone will keep you up). While this might be the hardest of all habits to break, it could possibly have the biggest impact on helping you fall asleep faster. Turn off these devises at least 60 minutes before going to bed and don’t bring them into the bedroom. The impact can be massive.
- Create a relaxation routine before going to bed. We recommend a comforting shower, free reading (again, not on your phone) or 20 minutes of journaling. Transition both your mind and body into the bedtime process and let your body naturally relax and fall to sleep.
- Watch what you’re eating and drinking late night. Avoid large meals and foods, particularly those that could lead to digestive issues, which could interfere with sleep throughout the night.
- Keep a consistent sleep schedule, both going to bed and waking-up at the same time each day. Even on the weekends! Moreover, if you find yourself awake in the night, consider getting out of bed to do something that’s relaxing, rather than becoming stressed out by staring at your clock (consider removing your clock from the bedroom as well). At some point, your body will want to go back to bed.
- Maintain a healthy diet, and consider adding foods to your diet that could help support healthy sleep. You’ll find a variety of recipes on our blog that can help your sleep hygiene (here’s one to get started).
Be mindful of your alcohol intake. While your nightcap might make you sleepy (alcohol after all is considered a sedative), alcohol can suppress your REM sleep, disrupting your natural sleep pattern throughout the night (in some cases, you might be waking-up periodically but don’t realize it due to the alcohol). This contributes to why you feel so exhausted the next day.
Going cold turkey on alcohol can be a challenge, so consider a plan to begin reducing your alcohol intake over time, or adjust to only certain days of the week. In lieu of alcohol, consider making a switch to one of our sleep formulas that are both refreshing and help compliment the above.
Consider this: if you’re getting the recommended eight hours, that’s 1/3 of your life spent sleeping! Don’t neglect your sleep, but rather incorporate some of the above to make it better. The positive impact on your day ahead can be incredible.