At one point or another, everyone experiences a sleepless night. In short, it's the worst. You get up the morning feeling disoriented, exhausted, and groggy. Not even the strongest cup of coffee will help you.
While the occasional sleepless night is ok, prolonged insomnia is detrimental to your health and can disrupt your memory, make you less alert, and can even contribute to obesity. So when you tell someone that you need to get your beauty sleep, it's definitely true!
Getting a good night's sleep will make you happier, healthier, and more alert, so how do you keep the dreaded sleepless night from rearing its ugly head? Here are 5 tips to help you fall asleep with ease.
1. Turn off the screens
A big part of the modern world, for better or worse, is looking at different kinds of screens. Whether it's the TV, a smartphone, your computer, or a tablet, screens emit blue light, which can interrupt your sleep patterns. Blue light interrupts the production of melatonin, a sleep-inducing hormone. If you can't get to sleep, then your whole circadian rhythm (or internal body clock) is thrown off, which can be detrimental to your health overall.
But if screens are so prevalent today, how do you counteract the negative effects of blue light? First of all, you can turn off all screens at least an hour before you go to bed. That means no cell phones, no tablets, no TV before bed. Be strict with yourself in the name of a good night's sleep!
If that's not an option for you, there's some good news. Many smartphones and tablets nowadays have a blue light filter on them. If you turn the blue light filter on, it will make the screen look more yellow, reducing the amount of blue light. You can even get glasses now with a blue light filter in them, so that no matter what screen you look at, the blue light is filtered out. I have them and have been sleeping like a baby ever since I got them!
2. Avoid caffeine
This may seem like a no-brainer, but it bears repeating. Do your best to avoid caffeine for a few hours before hitting the sack.
When I was younger, I could drink a cup of coffee right before bed and fall asleep 20 minutes later no problem. Unfortunately, that's not the case anymore, and I try not to drink caffeine after 4 pm. Avoiding a stimulant like caffeine before bed can help you fall asleep better and faster.
3. Be strict with your sleep
Having a routine is important, especially when it comes to sleep. Our bodies love routines, as a routine essentially tells our bodies what to expect next.
My bedtime routine looks a little like this:
- turn off all screens about an hour before I want to go to bed
- brush my teeth
- do my skincare routine
- curl up in bed with a good book for about 45 minutes
If you do the same routine over and over before bed, it will help tell your body that it's time to go to bed, and that it's time to start letting go of the stress of the day. You'll start to notice that you'll get sleepy even if you didn't feel tired when you started your bedtime routine, and you'll fall asleep faster and sleep more deeply.
4. Check your room
This goes hand in hand with number 3. Your body loves routine, and it loves familiar spaces. With this in mind, try to save your bedroom just for sleeping. Turn it into a sanctuary for sleep, with relaxing colors, smells, and objects around you.
For example, my room is painted in dark, calming colors, I have dark curtains over the windows to keep out the light, and I keep a lavender plant on my nightstand so that I fall asleep to its relaxing scent.
By saving your bedroom for sleep only, your body will recognize it as a safe space meant solely for sleeping. This means that you shouldn't bring your laptop into your bedroom to type out one last email before falling asleep! By doing so, you're bringing work stress into your sanctuary, which will cause your mind to "turn on" and think about work stress instead of counting sheep.
5. Exercise daily
Daily exercise is a great way to help work on your sleep. Have you ever been lying awake in bed at night, with the feeling that you just didn't move enough during the day? It has definitely kept me awake before.
Tire out both your mind and your body over the course of the day, so that crawling into bed is that much more delicious.
Bonus points: exercise is one of the best things you can do for your mind, body, and skin! Download our Goal Sheet here!
Good, deep, sleep is really the best beauty sleep you can get. If you don't get enough sleep, it will make you sluggish, inattentive, and can even lead to obesity.
In order to get the best beauty sleep you can, follow these five simple steps:
DO turn off the screens
DO have a strict bedtime routine
DO make your room a sleeping sanctuary
DO exercise daily
DON'T drink caffeine within a few hours of going to sleep
Scientific American in: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/q-a-why-is-blue-light-before-bedtime-bad-for-sleep/