Our lives can get kind of crazy and when that happens there are two things that in my experience tend to go array very quickly and that is eating habits and sleeping habits. There are a few simple habits we can create in our everyday lives that will help us get a better night’s sleep. As always, creating new habits takes time so I suggest incorporating these into your lives one at a time and putting your best foot forward in terms of sticking to the habit. You will be glad you did once you have reached your goal!
set an alarm to go to bed
Yep, you read that right! I know (from firsthand experience) that we can get easily distracted in the evenings. Think: Netflix, Hulu, Instagram, Pinterest, etc. – you get the drift. My point is that if we are not conscious about it our evenings will fly by and before we know it its 10PM and time to prepare to the next day. So, setting an alarm to be in bed by will keep you accountable with how you spend your time in the evenings.
avoid exercising 4 hours before bedtime
Regularly exercising has amazing benefits on your body (and mental) wellbeing, BUT, exercising late in the evening can come in between you and a good night’s sleep. I have especially noticed this if I do some type of cardio workout but not as much if I do Yoga or light Pilates.
ditch the caffeine after lunch
This is a tough one for me during our extreme seasons (summer and winter) – on the (very few) hot summer days I will give in and have an iced latte and on the (very many) cold winter days I get the urge to drink a hot cup of coffee in the afternoon. While I have not solved for the summer days iced latte urge I have done a pretty good job at eliminating coffee in the afternoons during winter by replacing my coffee with a cup of decaf tea. I have never been much of a tea drinker; however, I am learning to appreciate it more and more these days.
spray your sheets
There are certain natural scents that are very calming and relaxing like lavender, chamomile, vanilla and ylang-ylang. My favorite is lavender or a lavender-vanilla blend. You can easily make your own calming mixtureto spray your sheets a few minutes before getting into bed by mixing a few drops of essential oils (can be found in pharmacies or grocery stores) into a spray bottle.
Having some type of white noise on at night can do wonders for your sleep because it will help tune out noises (cars, dogs and/or people) that can wake you up at night. I have a air purifier that not only purifies my air but also serves as white noise - double win! Another option is to search white noise on YouTube and you will come across videos that are 8-10 hours long.