Disclosure: This post contains affiliate link(s).
If I learned anything in college it was that no amount of Tervisâ€™ full of coffee or sugar-free Redbulls can make me as positive and productive than getting a quality nightâ€™s sleep. I am not an advocate of all-nighters and I believe deeply that your bedroom has the power to change your life. Laying in your bed at a decent hour, however, is only a fraction of what it requires to fall asleep and wake up well-rested.
Sometimes the routine stresses in our lives can quickly take hold of any well to-do intentions we have to getting a good nights sleep and can often lead to bigger and badder problems. Not managing routine stress can lead to serious issues, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, depression, and anxiety disorder. Tackling our responses to routine stress can help alleviate its effects on our energy levels and ability to get that sweet heavenly 8 hours. Just let it go, y’all.
Sniff Some Lavender
I canâ€™t rave enough about the benefits of lavender. This plant is more than a trendy addition to your latte or cupcake. Research has shown that the scent of lavender can decrease blood pressure and heart rate, the most immediate victims of stress. You may not be so lucky to have a meadow of wild lavender at your disposal, but there are plenty of alternatives. Iâ€™ve recently discovered two lavender scented candles at TJ Maxx that actually smell like lavender. Iâ€™m pretty sure I light those babies nearly every night. Using this Aromatherapy Lavender Chamomile line from Bath and Body Works is another way to incorporate the calming scent into your day.
Okay, I know I make reference to yoga in like every other post, but the benefits are too good to stop sharing. Doing as little as 5 minutes of yoga before attempting to doze off to dreamland releases all of that pent up tension in your body. Practicing mindfulness will allow you to take back control of your thoughts and s l o w them down. If youâ€™re not sure what poses to do, donâ€™t worry! My girl, Erin Motz, has a video for that. Check it out here.
This sounds so sterile, but hear me out, because reading can go from good to bad real quick. Experiencing quality reading material before bed is important to indulging in an interesting subject and to avoid thinking about the work you left behind that day, however, there are a couple things to avoid. #1 allowing an hour to pass and not the 15 minutes you originally allotted yourself and #2 selecting a suspenseful mystery novel that makes all those shadows in your room look like real monsters.
I used to be a total coffee-only snob and never give tea the light of day. After a revelation and lots of sugar, I became completely transformed. Drinking tea calms my nerves like nothing else in the world. Iâ€™ve recently discovered Celestial Sleepytime Vanilla Herbal Tea and it is delicious. This â€śherbal depressantâ€ť sends you right to sleep, with no hangovers in sight.
Make A List
After a busy day or before a big event, my brain decides the best time to remind me of all the things I need to do is while Iâ€™m laying in my bed trying to fall asleep. Iâ€™ve found that creating a to-do list at the end of the day helps to manage all of those thoughts that peak their head when Iâ€™m trying to unwind.
The weirdest and most effective thing I do to fall asleep faster is wear an (really awful animal print) eye mask I bought at the Dollar Tree. Despite the fact that I don’t have windows in my bedroom, the flashing lights on my wifi router and the oven light that peeks under my door basically lights up my “dark” bedroom like the 4th of July. Eliminating all of that light from my field of vision really makes a difference. Whether it’s wearing an eye mask or using a fan to cut out the noise from outside, eliminating distractions will help you focus on the task at hand–getting some quality shut eye.
Stick To A Routine
Turn the lights down, change into your pjâ€™s, sip some tea, brush your teeth, wash your face (PSA: a dirty face is a whole other issue), make your to-do list, read a few pages of a good book, and slide under the covers. Like the setting sun, your bedtime routine signals to your brain that the day is done.
What is your bedtime routine?