As an advocate for healthy living – maintaining a balanced lifestyle, eating nourishing food and exercising regularly – I continue to fail dismally in one crucial area that’s key to our health and wellbeing. The sleep department. In my head, I am obviously a superhuman that can do everything in a day (exercise, work, socialise, live, blog, repeat) and thus survive on five hours sleep a night. Fortunately for my body’s sake, this disillusioned regime has recently begun to unravel. Only a few weeks ago I found myself sleeping for almost 24 hours straight. Clearly my body has had enough.
Despite the fact that I know how important sleep is for both mental and physical wellbeing and just how damaging sleep deprivation is, old habits die hard. So I turned to google for some quick fixes on how to develop a better sleeping routine. After trawling through tips, tricks and “sleep hacks” the below list is what I am putting into practice – my curated list of tips to sleep better.
1. Create a relaxing bedtime routine
I find when I come home from work it takes me a while to wind down. So to kick-start the process, I’ve started to jump in the shower and pull on my PJs shortly after walking in the door. Dinner then becomes part of the wind down process along with a bit of mindless TV and a cup of herbal tea before getting into bed with a good book. Lights out no later than 10pm! (The latter is a work in progress)
2. Zen-ify your bedroom
Considering we spend at least 1/3 of our life in bed then the bare essentials should be a good quality mattress, luxe sheets and bedroom furniture to suit your style. I find that clutter and clothes everywhere in the bedroom stresses me out, so I like LOTS of storage that I can close the door on. If your bedroom is in need of a facelift Super Amart are having a stocktake sale until June 2. Hello newness!
3. Adjust the room temperature
I don’t know about anyone else, but when it comes to bedroom temperature I’m worse than Goldilocks. Too hot and I’m irritated and restless, too cold and I wake up with a blocked nose and sore throat. So to make sure I achieve that “juuust right” climate, I sleep with the fan on in summer and have an extra woollen blanket on hand in winter.
4. Use an app
On those nights that your mind just won’t switch off, use an app to help silence it. I find these apps are also super handy when fellow apartment dwellers decide to have raging parties into the wee hours. I use Sleep Machine to drown out ambient noise (I combine rain with wind and fan or train ride), while Simply Being is great for guided meditation to help me relax.
5. Keep a notebook on your bedside table
This one I couldn’t advocate more. Before I turn off the lights at night I write down everything that is ticking over in my mind – my list of “to do’s” and “don’t forgets”. That way I’ve documented everything I need to remember in the morning and it’s listed for “future me” to deal with. I also like knowing that a pen and paper is sitting right next to the bed in case I wake with that million-dollar idea. It hasn’t happened yet but I’m all for being prepared! Plus it’s an excuse to go buy gorgey stationery like this Kikki K notepad.
Anyone else have terrible sleeping habits? What are your tips for more shuteye?
Image credit: Jasmine Dowling Eye of the Dreamer Pillow