Hello there! Queen of bad sleep over here, or not so much as I embark on my constant quest to get the best nights sleep possible. Allowing me to recover well and take the next day in the stride it needs to be.
I’ve said it before, and I will say it again, bad sleep impacts everything. Including but not limited to, mood from a mental perspective and of course, our physical functions. Sleep should be taken more seriously than it is because without it, and without quality sleep we can’t be the best we can be.
Step 1 – What’s your sleep setup?
I said to my husband the other day that when our bedroom has piles of washing to put away, I find I can’t relax. Regardless of if it’s neat in the corner, some how my subconscious knows. I always have a disturbed sleep. So really look at what is in your room. The space should be calming.
As an extra bonus for step 1. have you considered your bedding? I got some new sheets, duvet cover and a gorgeous bed throw and a lush duvet from Very, and honestly, I feel so snug from such high quality bedding, it helps me drift off. I’d also suggest getting some nice pyjamas and nightwear, not forgetting dressing gowns, because I do tend to find if you feel good, you do honestly sleep so much better.
Step 2. Time to unwind
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, you can’t just run about all day and hop into bed thinking you’re gonna be find to nod off. Sleep doesn’t work that way, perhaps as kids, but as adults there is a lot more than being physically exhausted. Our minds are going 100 miles an hour on some days.
Big tip is to allow, if possible up to an hour before you do lights out and sleep. What is your process? I light some candles, take my make up off, and read or journal. Sometimes I’ll do some sorting in the bedroom, but I’m in the calm space, slowly unwinding my mind before I hit the hay. Try an extra splash of ‘This Works Pillow Spray’. It’s a must!
Step 3. Bye bye technology
I’m super guilty of this but honestly, you have got to switch your phone off, and I’d strongly advise not having a TV in your bedroom. Not only does screen glare impact our sleep, but by bringing mental stimulation like scrolling through tiktok or instagram, can keep your mind super active. You’ll probably find that things you read or watch will impact your dreams too.
It’s a lot to handle, and means you just wont get a decent deep sleep. You’ll probably find you sit in light sleep. So turn that phone off. Most have an evening setting with do not disturb.
Step 4. Unwind with some me time
Some might argue that this may disrupt sleep due to midnight urge to go to the bathroom, but I personally find if I ditch caffeine after lunchtime, and introduce camomile tea, I sleep far better. I sometimes have Horlicks or a milky drink to soothe me to sleep. The main step here is to avoid caffeine after a certain point of the day. Much like too much mental stimulation from digital devices, too much coffee can really keep you wide awake.
Another great idea for some unwinding time is a hot bath. Add in some aromatherapy oils like lavender and you’ll feel relaxed and ready to drift off.
Step 4. Reading and writing before bedtime
Reading is one of the best things you can do to shut off your mind, especially light hearted books or informative reads. I personally don’t enjoy things that involve relationships and those kinds of novels, I actually love thrillers and crimes, which perhaps isn’t the best bed time read, so I tend to read novels that are about dogs or animals. Things that can’t make me think about my own life, as that then triggers me to have my mind wander, potentially on a stressful path.
The other thing I cannot recommend enough is journaling. Oh this is the best. Everything from my day that’s bothered me is on that paper. It’s off my mind and out there. It can’t sit with me, because I’ve offloaded it.
Conclusion to sleeping well
Don’t let insomnia get the better of you, sitting up wishing to sleep but not being able to only stresses us out all the more. If that happens read or listen to a podcast until you drift off. However, if you can implement these 5 steps into your bedtime routine, you’ll be on your way to sleeping well.
*Post in collaboration with Very