13 Aug The top 5 ways to get a good night’s sleep
You can’t put a price on a good night’s sleep. Having suffered insomnia for years, I know too well how sleeping badly affects every aspect of your life – it is hard to concentrate, you become more moody and would you believe there is a greater chance of gaining weight!
So how can you sleep better? Read my top 5 personal ways to get a better night’s sleep.
1. A great mattress
I cannot tell you how important this simple tip is. After so many years of sleeping badly, I finally decided to spend big and get a new mattress (a Tempur – cost me a fortune but worth every cent). My theory is that you spend around a third of your life in bed so get the best quality mattress you can afford that suits your body.
2. Go to bed when you are actually tired
If you’re not tired, don’t force it. Tossing and turning will only cause sleep anxiety. Use your bed only for sleeping. If you can’t sleep, go do something else then come back. When we hop into bed with a book, our brain starts associating our bedroom with activities that keep us alert. Once it becomes a habit, it can be hard to quit. We want our brain to know that when we get into bed we want to go to sleep, and not anything else.
3. Clear your mind
One of the main reasons I can’t get to sleep is that I find it hard to switch off my brain – it is continually churning through the day’s events as well as what I have to do the next day which often keeps me wide awake.
If this sounds like you, then the trick is to clear your mind before you attempt to go to sleep – there are a range of different ways to do this. I find watching TV helps but you can also write down the tasks you want to do tomorrow, focus on deep breathing, read a short story or try some meditation. Whatever you use, do this same activity each time before you go to bed so your brain associates the activity with sleep so your body starts to prepare.
4. Turn off your mobile phone
Or even better, get it right out of the bedroom. Even if the rings, dings, buzzing or beeping doesn’t wake you up, removing the phone altogether stops the temptation to check your emails or read your Facebook feed. When you do this, your brain starts to kick into gear which makes it so much harder to go back to sleep.
Using your computer, doing paperwork or texting on your phone, all these activities stimulate your brain, instead of relaxing you so try to avoid these things before you go to bed.
5. Exercise more
Of course I had to sneak this reason in!
Research proves time and time again that exercise positively impacts the sleeping habits of people – they fall asleep more quickly, they sleep better and they feel less tired during the day. So get a good training session in and not only will you feel better, you should sleep better too.