Sleep, as we know, is so important for our health and wellbeing. If you don't have enough we feel tired through the day which can lead to stress. This leads to us not doing what we want to do during the daytime. What happens if we struggle to get to sleep? Well, there may be things you are not doing that would be beneficial to you and help you to relax into sleep. These nine ways will give you ideas to relax a lot better so you get that restful sleep that you have been dreaming about.
1) Don't eat two hours before you go to bed - food gives you energy and if you eat before you sleep then it fuels you for activity. Especially if you have something sweet it will give you that rush of energy which you don't want at that time of night. Also having food late at night and then lying down could cause indigestion and a restless night. If you are someone who needs to have something before you go to bed then have something very small two hours before.
2) Eliminate caffeine - If you drink lots of drinks with caffeine at night then it will be difficult for you to sleep. A cup of coffee can remain in your body for six hours so if you have a drink before bed or hours before don't be surprised you can't sleep. If you are a coffee lover have decaffeinated or try a nice herbal tea (such as chamomile) for your for hot drink fix.
3) De-clutter your bedroom - However much we try to cover our eyes of the clutter that maybe piled up in the corner of the room, or items have that not been tidied away can lead to stress especially in the bedroom which is a place of rest. If the bedroom is cluttered then how is it allowing our minds to de-clutter? The time you spend tidying will give you extra time to sleep rather than staying awake in bed.
4) Listen to music - listening to a relaxing song could help relax and unwind. A calm, relaxing song could be played gently in the background when you switch the light off to unwind from the day. Concentrate on the sound of the song and let your thoughts drift away.
5) Breathing in and out- breathing could be done during listening to music or when you are ready to go to sleep. Take a deep breath in, hold and then breathe out. If there is something bothering you from your day or problems then think of the issue and breathe it out. So whatever is bothering you is going out of your body on the out breath and love is entering you on the in-breath.
6) Lavender - placing dry lavender on your pillow before you go to sleep or putting a few drops of lavender oil directly onto your pillow, or a cloth to place by your pillow, can instantly make you unwind from your mind. It has relaxing properties to make you have a lovely sleep.
7) Switch off all electrical devices - having your phone, computer, television on just before you go to bed can stimulate the mind and won't let it settle before you to sleep. If you have jobs to do on the computer give yourself at least two hours before bed to stop what you are doing. Same with phones, television etc. Keep it to a minimum in the evenings, a maximum of two hours. Instead of watching television up to the time you go to bed, go run yourself a bath and unwind with some essential oils such as lavender to let your day wash away from you. If you like to read, read a book before you go to bed. Spend a good half a hour in your bedroom before you go to sleep so you give your mind the time to realise it's time for bed and time to relax.
8) Write it down - If things are coming to you about what you need to do the next day or you are concerned about something then write it down in the 30 minutes before you go to sleep. By writing it down it's a reminder for the next day and writing out your feelings gets it all out. After writing your concerns take a few deep breathes in and out to fully get your emotions out to then settle for a peaceful sleep.
9) Get into a routine - Go to bed at a regular time so you allow your body to unwind. Your body will get used to this and will be ready to go to sleep when you feel tired. You will need to do this a few times so that your body gets used to the pattern.
Try out all these tips and see what works for you best. It will benefit you to do more than one of these if you struggle a lot. Once you have made it a routine you will naturally go to sleep as you associate these actions with going to bed.