5 Tips For Sleeping Better
By Allison Lew
I am no stranger to sleepless nights. Even when I was a baby I had trouble sleeping deeply. A couple of decades, many doctor consultations, and Google searches later, I’ve consolidated a list of sleep hygiene practices that have been helpful for me and may also be helpful for you.
- Pick a bedtime and stick to it. A consistent consecutive sleep schedule will help your body get into the rhythm of falling asleep.
- Unplug. Avoid looking at screens (i.e. TVs, phones, computers, tablets, etc.) 30-60 minutes before your scheduled bedtime.
- Before bed, empty your head. Sometimes my mind fills to the brim and overflowing with ideas, problems, and solutions. I like to keep a small notebook by my bed because transferring my thoughts from inside my head onto paper can really help lighten my mental load.
- One track mind. Keeping your bed a strictly sleep only zone(which means no reading, using your computer, working, eating, etc.) can be helpful because it trains your body to expect to sleep when it hits the mattress.
- Relax. As a byproduct of my busy schedule, I’ve noticed that my baseline body state is tense. This means that I have to make a conscious effort in order to feel relaxed. Am exercise I like to do is imagining that I am a closed fist slowly releasing tension into an open palmed hand. If this sounds like something you’d like to try, search for autogenic meditation on YouTube.
- Extras. Outside of bedtime rituals, regular exercise and healthy eating throughout the day can contribute to a good night’s sleep.