Let’s be realistic. No one wants to cut out their morning coffee or leave their sweet tooth unsatisfied.
The good news is you don’t have to! However, cutting out as much sugar and caffeine from your diet as possible, especially after supper, will be guaranteed to improve your sleep patterns over time.
A regular exercise routine can not only keep you fit, but it can also help you get better sleep, as long as it is not done within four hours of going to bed.
3) Stay away from alcohol and drugs
Alcohol and drugs may seem like the perfect sleep solution, however, there is one problem: they don’t work in the long-term.
Short-term they may induce drowsiness and help you fall asleep, but they don’t usually keep you asleep the entire night, nor do they promote deep sleep (and can be habit-forming).
4) Go to bed
It can be tempting to watch one more episode, read one more page, or surf one more website, but this can lead to staying up much later than planned.
Engaging in calming activities at least 30 minutes before bed and actually turning the lights (and electronics) off at least seven hours before you need to get up in the morning will do wonders for your physical and mental wellness.
5) Be grateful
Maybe it was a bad day. Once you hit the pillow, perhaps you are tempted to think about all that’s gone wrong, but you should resist that urge and instead think about what you are grateful for.
Take the time to write down what’s working well in your life.
Remember, it is your choice whether you focus on the positive or the negative, and that choice will significantly impact how you feel and consequently how you sleep.
Learning to quiet your mind and focus your awareness on the present moment will not only help you sleep, it will help you meet all of your wellness goals.
Whether you’ve meditated before doesn’t matter. Get started quickly and easily with a 10 minute guided meditation right before bed. YouTube is a great resource for free meditations.
Focus on your breathing.
Breathe in for eight counts, hold your breath for four counts and breathe out for seven counts.
This breathing technique not only distracts your mind but also has a real calming effect on your nervous system.
Repeat until you fall asleep.
8) Put your problems away
Place a small box on your night stand.
When a worry comes up, imagine yourself putting it in the box and remind yourself that it will be there in the morning.
If you’re a visual person, you may need to write your problems on a piece of paper and physically put it in the box.
Once all of your problems have been put away, imagine a light switch in your brain and flick it off.
If your mind wanders back, simply remind yourself that your problems are safely stowed away and do not give yourself permission to re-visit them until morning.
9) Get bored
If you turned the lights off 20 minutes ago and are still not sleeping after practicing the steps listed above, get up and read a very boring book.
When you start feeling sleepy, go back to bed and repeat the breathing exercises.
10) Practice common sense
If you’re napping all day, you likely won’t get the best sleep at night so try to avoid naps.
Turn your devices off when you go to bed. Keep the bedroom dark and quiet. Don’t eat too much before bed but don’t go to bed starving either.
Create a sensible bedtime routine that you can stick to consistently.
Consider a sleep supplement like magnesium or melatonin.
You may think you’ve tried everything to get over insomnia, but you’ve likely missed a few steps or haven’t practiced them consistently. If you’re serious about a good night’s sleep, start practicing these strategies every day and you’ll be well on your way to getting all the zzz’s you need!