The past couple weeks I have been working on my sleeping habits. You know, working on things like going to sleep at the same time, no screens a half hour before bed, drinking sleepy time tea and using my new weighted blanket! It feels like my life has changed. Below I included my Pre bed-time routine, quick sleep hacks and other tips I’ve found along the way! If you struggle with getting into a regular sleep pattern I would strongly suggest implementing some of these. A lack of sleep can lead to anxiety and a handful of other daily struggles.
The pre-bed-time routine! I can honestly say besides brushing my teeth and washing my face I’d never really done this before. Until recently, I didn’t even necessarily sleep in my bed every night lol. I had a lot of nights on the couch. BUT times have changed and I’m working on a routine. Here’s what has been helping.
Pre bed-time routine:
- Cooling down! Personally I hate the cold but studies say it’s better to sleep chilled. So I’ve been setting it between 60-67 degrees. That’s the accurate temperature according to national sleep foundation. And I don’t know what it is but something is so nice about cuddling up under the blankets for warmth!
- No screens a half hour before bed. I think the actual rule is an hour before bed but I am trying to be realistic. This has just helped with the mellowing out before bed. The screens keep your mind active!
- Meditation/ prayer/ quiet time. For me this is prayer but any of these will work! Just make a little time to consciously quiet your mind.
- Lavender Essential Oils. I get the lavender essential oils going and rub on my temples and wrists. It is said to have a calming affect. And I say it works.
- Sleep with an eye mask: When your brain senses pure darkness, it causes the production of melatonin, the chemical of sleep.
The routine above has been extremely helpful in getting to sleep and sleeping through the night on most nights. BUT most nights, aren’t all nights. For the more difficult nights, or the nights of higher anxiety I use these sleep hacks:
- Sleepy time tea– To be honest, I am not totally sure how effective this is but I can say it is very soothing. The smell and the warmth relax me. And relaxation is KEY!
- Use a weighted blanket: For someone with anxiety this was a big one for me! I honestly feel more calm with one on. Here’s how it works: The pressure from the weight causes the body to produce serotonin and endorphins, which are chemicals our bodies naturally use to relax.
- Bed time breathing: If all else fails. Try this: Close your mouth and inhale quietly through your nose to a mental count of four.
Hold your breath for a count of seven. Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound to a count of eight. Repeat.
Here are a couple other things I have found in my research!
- Avoid naps more than 30 minutes
- No workouts a couple hours before bed
- Same bed time every night/ wake up +- 20 minutes (sleep association)
My Sleeping Essentials: