Without any scientific data to tell us so, we know that a great night’s sleep is, well, GREAT! While we cannot control all of the factors that go into a good night’s sleep, there is much we can do to set the stage for a night of high quality sleep.
- Make your bedroom environment conducive to comfortable sleep – a good mattress; cozy sheets, pillows, and blankets; cool temperatures; quiet; dark; few (ideally no) electronics.
- At some point during the day, plan your bedtime and begin to organize your tasks and activities so you can be ready for bed at that time. Your bedtime and wake time should enable you to get at least 7.5 hours of sleep. Experiment to determine the best bed time and hours of sleep for you and your body.
- Give your body and mind time to transition from your daily activities to a relaxed state conducive to sleep. Start this transition 30 – 90 minutes before you “hit the hay.”
- Turn off the electronics – stop using or looking at your computer, tablet, or smartphone screens, giving your mind and eyes time to wind down before you go to sleep.
- Wrap up the day – update your to do list, clean up your desk, put away any projects you have been working on, clean up the kitchen, make a list of anything that is worrying you or on your mind, and set the intention to address it in the morning (after a good night’s sleep). The key here is to find your way of signaling your mind and your body that the day is coming to a close.
- Create a ritual that relaxes your body and mind and prepares you for sleep. This could be some light reading or maybe some meditation or easy stretching to let go of any tension from the day. Your ritual can be anything that enables you to let go of the day and create a relaxed body and mind.
Experiment to find what works best for you. And then practice these habits and rituals with consistency and persistency.
To your fitness & health!