Is there anything better than sleeping well and for as long as you need? Obviously that’s a rhetorical question because we all know good sleep is the actual best.
But trying to get that elusive golden slumber may remind you more of a nightmare than a dream. If sleep is a struggle for you, and counting those sheep just isn’t cutting it (has it ever?), here’s a list of hacks to make you a smarter snoozer:
1. Treat your bed as a sacred space.
Birds and bees. Wine and cheese. Beyonce and Jay-Z.
These associations are pretty common. But what do you associate with “bed”? Your Twitter feed? A Netflix binge-session? If you find yourself tossing and turning instead of sleeping and snoring, you’re probably not creating the right associations in your bedroom.
The more you treat your bed as a sacred space for sleeping, the easier it will be to catch some zzz’s. Help your body learn that when you lie in bed, it’s time to fall asleep. Keep almost all other activities out of the bedroom. The exception? Sex and intimacy are perfectly acceptable (and let’s face it: enjoyable!) activities for that mattress. Otherwise…it’s gotta be all sleep, all the time.
2. Get your workout in, but time it right.
If you already exercise, then you’re at least halfway to a better night of sleep. If you don’t, that’s fine, too; you do you! Studies show exercise helps you fall asleep better and sleep for longer
The trick is in the timing.
Immediately after you exercise, you’ll feel more alert and refreshed. A few hours later, when you snuggle into bed, you’ll find yourself getting better sleep. Just make sure not to do your HIIT or kickboxing right before bed, or your body will be revved when you want it to relax.
3. Thoughts running through your head? Journal before bed.
Stress is a pretty big obstacle to sleep. And when you can’t sleep, you tend to feel more stressed. It’s a pretty vicious cycle, but there is a way out.
Take some of those thoughts out of your head and put them on paper.
A list of things to do tomorrow? Write it down and relax with the peace of mind that you won’t forget. Rough day? Write about some positive events to redirect your mind. General anxiety and worry? Write those sleep problems away and look forward to a night of better sleep.
4. Give those electronics a rest, too.
If you want to power down your mind, you need to power down your electronics, too. There’s growing evidence that they actually stimulate you before bed, and it’s not just because of social media drama and addicting apps.
Most electronics--TVs, computers, cell phones, you name it--use blue light, similar to the “get up and get ready for the day” light that comes from the morning sun. This is exactly the light you don’t need when you’re trying to rest.
What do experts suggest? Set an electronics curfew at least a half hour before you want to fall asleep so you can cozy up effectively in bed.
5. Keep your cool…temperature, that is.
The human body naturally starts to lower in temperature as it gets closer to bedtime. This might explain why curling up under the covers feels oh-so comfy and helps you drift off to dreamland. If you’re having trouble sleeping, here are a few tricks to lower your body temperature.
Try turning down the thermostat before bed to help simulate your body’s natural drop in temperature. You might also be able to relax by taking a bath and climbing into bed as your body counters the warm water by cooling itself off a bit. Already lying in bed? No worries--stick those toes out of the covers!
6. Light for night.
None of these sleep hacks are particularly difficult, but this last one is about as easy as they get: Brilli, wellness lighting that can help you slip away into peaceful, dreamy bliss.
Traditional LED bulbs don’t provide the perfect lighting for sleep.
But with Brilli, you can flip a switch to wind down and relax before you climb into bed. How, you ask? We have bulbs that provide the best spectrum for sleep, a warm tone that looks and feels like twilight. You’ll feel like you’re winding down under the setting sun and curling up in candlelight.
Dreaming yet? If not, you can be. Just power down this electronic screen you’re viewing and power up some Brilli warm lights instead.
Learn more at: BeBrilli.com/WindDown