July 27, 2013
We all know how wonderful it is to wake up feeling totally refreshed and rejuvenated. But what does good sleep consist of? Sometimes we go to bed early and sleep well but wake up feeling tired or grumpy for no understandable reason and sometimes it takes us so long to go to sleep that we wake up feeling that we haven't slept enough. Having a comfortable bed and soft, comfy bedding is part of the equation, but it's not enough to guarantee a good sleep.
We've done some research to find what the best ways to get a great night's sleep are and, although some of these tips are quite obvious to us, there were some we hadn't thought of before!
We've found that to get a great night's sleep, you need to nail each of these steps:
1) Falling asleep
2) Staying asleep through the night
3) Waking up
Here are some tips on how to do that
Eat a Small Dinner - This is so important and quite easy. Eating a big meal before bed can keep your digestion working for hours, but a small meal puts a light demand on your body and allows it to rest much more fully.
Relax Your Mind - Like your body, your mind can be over stimulated and make it hard to get a really good night's rest. If you're feeling stressed, try not to work or look at emails after dinner. I know that I tend to spend hours on my computer before going to sleep, and that stuff really winds me up! Instead of doing that, why not take a hot bath and read a book to take your mind off the day and into sleep
Build up good sleep - Don't expect a really good night's sleep on your first night. You need at least two nights and preferably three to get into a really good sleep and get some deep rest. We recommend sticking to these tips for a few days before expecting a real change...
Exercise Helps - Being physically tired really contributes to a good night's sleep. Having some form of daily exercise as a part of your routine will definitely help your body to relax at night.
Avoid Caffeine - Not having coffee or tea at night seems obvious, right? But even things like chocolate stimulate your body and are not your best friend when it comes to a good night's sleep.
Unwind Your Body - We already recommended a hot bath to help you unwind, and we'll say it again! The heat and water of a hot bath are very relaxing for the skin and muscles. If you don't have time for a bath, take a warm shower and moisturize your skin before you jump into your fresh, crisp sheets and you're all set!
Keep Your Waking Time Regular - Our mind and body love routine, and it's much easier to fall asleep and wake happily when the times are consistent. Even if the time you go to bed changes, try to keep your rising time consistent. This way your body always will know when to wake and you'll avoid that feeling of having gotten up too late or too early. Do that for a while and you'll find your body naturally waking up and ready to go!
Drink Water - Believe it or not, we lose lots of water while sleeping at night (this one was new to us!), so staying well hydrated really helps your body to rest comfortably.
Keep your room dark - Light actually disrupts sleep more than noise does. Keeping your windows well covered and eliminating any other ambient light is necessary to ensure a good rest.
I've tested these theories and find that they work and for me and, personally, I find that the waking up part is especially important. It can make or break my day. What are your experiences? Do you have any special tips on how to sleep well?
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