A good night’s sleep is, I believe, the most important thing that you can do for your health. If you’ve ever tossed and turned for hours or pulled an all-nighter, you know how bad it feels the next day. If you read my 5 Things About Me post, you know that I’ve struggled with insomnia for my entire life.
Over the last few years, I’ve been able to manage it a little better, knowing what I know about holistic health and living a healthy lifestyle. Here are 5 tricks that I’ve learned and used for a better night’s rest. Obviously they don’t all work for everyone but they’ve truly changed my life.
1. Turn off all electronics 1 hour before bed. In this day and age, that seems insane, but I swear to you it makes a world of difference. Put your phone on airplane mode, turn off the TV and shut down that lap top. Bored? Read a book!
2. Create a night time ritual. For me that means (after I cut the electronics) I shower, brush my teeth, dim the lights, put on my yoga toes (seriously!), and read for 30 minutes. This ritual calms me down and takes my mind off of whatever happened that day.
3. Valerian root extract. This natural herb (taken in tincture form) has been a game changer for me. 90% of the time, my sleep issues are anxiety related. If I take Valerian root (read label for amounts) about 30 minutes before bed, I feel much calmer and am way more likely to sleep through the night.
4. No caffeine after 11am. What? 11am you say? Yes, I said it. People say to me all the time that caffeine hardly effects them. Oh really? Then why do you need it so often? Try drinking your morning coffee or tea and then leaving it at that. It seems absurd that something so early in the day can affect your sleep but try and prove me wrong by testing it for yourself.
5. Create a comfortable and happy place in your bedroom. Your bed should be a safe haven for you. A comfortable spot that you’re happy to curl into each and every night. Considering how many hours you spend in it, put in the effort that it deserves. Buy high quality and breathable linens that feel good against your skin and look pretty, making you excited to lay down in them for 8 hours.
Photo by Kate McElwee.