7 Tips To Help You Sleep Better

7 Tips To Help You Sleep Better
Carly Jacobs
I

used to be rad at sleeping but in the last few years I’ve fallen off the wagon a bit. It’s become a bit of a hobby of mine to research and play around with different methods for assisting sleep. Here a few things I’ve been doing over the past few years that have really helped. They may seem a bit obvious but sometimes I need to remind myself of the things that always help me sleep better…

how to sleep better

1. Avoid over indulging in alcohol

Having a big night on the booze is a sure fire way to get a fairly decent nights sleep but it will destroy your sleep schedule for the rest of the week. Stick to two standard drinks per sitting and 4 to 5 alcohol free nights per week. Also make sure that you leave a few hours between your last drink and bedtime. Better yet, try not drinking for a full month. I have several alcohol free months every year I honestly never sleep better than when I’m going easy on the wine. Give it a try.

2. Go to bed and get out of bed at roughly the same time every day

You don’t have to go to sleep, just be in bed. It’s pretty hard to fall asleep if you’re watching TV on the couch or wandering around the house chatting on the phone. If you’re in bed at the time that you wish to fall asleep the odds of that actually happening are much higher. The same applies to getting out of bed in the morning, especially on weekends. I love a sleep in but if I wake up after an extra hour or two of sleep on a Saturday morning and I don’t get out of bed immediately, that extra hour or two can easily turn into a lunch time affair. If you should be asleep, be in bed. If you shouldn’t be asleep, don’t be in bed. Simple.

3. Make sure you’ve burned enough energy through out the day

I’ve been using a FitBit pedometer religiously for two years which I’ve just replaced with an Apple Watch. Step tracking has been a life changing health hack for me. If I don’t make it to my 10,000 steps during the day I will not sleep well that night. Make sure you move every day. Enough to make yourself tired enough to have a decent night’s sleep. This is particularly important for people who work desk jobs who might not do enough incidental exercise. You may have to make an extra effort to walk more but it’s totally worth it.

4. Consider your environment

Make sure it’s dark and quiet in your bedroom. I live in an inner city, one bedroom apartment with my partner who runs an international business. This means he’s awake until at least 2am every night. He tries his best to be quiet but there’s generally too much light and noise for me to fall asleep. I use an eye mask and ear plugs to help me sleep and it’s made the biggest difference. My partner also sleeps with an eye mask so that he’s not disturbed in the morning when I get up before him.

5. Consider your temperature

If your core body temperature is too high you won’t be able to fall asleep. Conversely if your feet are cold you also won’t be able to sleep. Read 5 Proven Tips To Help You Fall Asleep for more information.

6. Keep your bedroom screen free

That means your phone as well. Unless you work on call there’s no reason why your phone should be anywhere near your bed. Get an old-fashioned alarm clock to wake you up in the morning and keep your phone out of the bedroom. This will stop you tweeting in the middle of the night when you should be concentrating on sleeping.

7. Make your bed every day

With sheets that you love in natural fibres. 100% cotton sheets with a season appropriate blanket (lighter for summer, warmer for winter) and a duck down pillow will make the world of difference. I’m serious about making your bed too. It takes 2 minutes and makes your bed ridiculously seductive. Do it.

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Are you a good sleeper or an average sleeper? How do you keep your sleep hygiene in check?

 

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15 Comments

  1. Sammie @ The Annoyed Thyroid 5 years ago

    Since the hubster had his stroke, we’ve been really working on the sleep hygiene, and you’re totes right going to bed and waking up at the same time is so important, even the doctor said so! I never sleep well after a big night on the booze and I’m still working on going screen free. Must get ye olde fashioned alarm clock.

    • Author
      Carly Jacobs 5 years ago

      I have an old fashioned alarm clock! I don’t use it as an alarm clock but it’s there just in case I need to see the time. My phone has not been welcome in my bedroom for about a year and it makes such a huge difference.

  2. I used to be a slow sleeper and take hours to fall asleep, then sleep in until mid-morning whenever I had the chance. Since having my daughter, I find I get to sleep a lot quicker as long as nothing razzes me up in those first critical minutes. Still nowhere near as quickly as my husband who can fall asleep in the time it takes to type this sentence and complains he “can’t sleep” if he’s lying there for more than 15 minutes. Routine and habit are definitely key.

    • Author
      Carly Jacobs 5 years ago

      Mr Smaggle struggle with sleep. When I say ‘I’m bad at sleep’ I mean comparatively to how I used to sleep which was head hits the pillow, out like a light! I’m pretty lucky because once I’m asleep, I’m asleep. I never wake up in the night.

  3. We just bought an electric mattress topper thingy on the weekend. Game. Changer. Getting into a warm bed and having it stay at a comfortably warm temperature all night has seen my husband and I have the best sleep we’ve had in a long time – 2 nights in a row now.
    We’re also doing Dry July this month and seem to have gone to bed and woken up at the same time over the course of the weekend as we do during the week. x

    • Author
      Carly Jacobs 5 years ago

      How disappointing is it when you give up alcohol and you realise how amazing and awesome not drinking is? It’s like the biggest disappointment of my adult life. I’m also doing ‘dry july’ but I’m going with ‘Almost Dry July’. My bestie’s mum is coming over from NZ to help plan her wedding so I’m allowed wedding planning champers a few vodka sodas but other than that no wine until problogger! Then obviously all the wine.

  4. Michaela Fox 5 years ago

    I haven’t slept well since having kids six years ago but I have worked on my sleep hygiene and it follows these suggestions. My other tip is to go to bed later and get up earlier. It may sound counterproductive but shortening the amount of time you are in bed will help increase the quality of your sleep and give you the sleep you need.

    • Author
      Carly Jacobs 5 years ago

      I totally think that works! I definitely did that last night to try to get back on track – went to sleep at around 1.30 am and got up at 8 and feeling pretty good!

  5. I’ve never been a good sleeper but I find that on the third night after 2 crappy nights sleep I’ll get 6 hours in a row and that sets me up for another 2 nights of shitty sleep. Such is the life of a person with chronic insomnia. I am getting better, that 4,78, breathing thing does help!

    • Author
      Carly Jacobs 5 years ago

      That breathing thing totally helps! I’ve just started back at the gym with my mate and it’s making me sleep so much better! It sounds sappy but I sleep a bit better when my partner goes to bed at the same time as me. It just helps me relax more.

  6. Belinda Jacobson 5 years ago

    Your timing is amazing Carly! I am struggling with my sleep schedule terribly this week – I think it might be time to cleanse the bedroom of all screens (I say as I type this from my bed…..) x

    • Author
      Carly Jacobs 5 years ago

      Lord yes! I cannot stress this enough! It’s all about getting those nasty screen out of your room. It makes such a big difference I promise!

  7. Fairlie 5 years ago

    I love to get into a beautifully made bed each night…so a big YES to No.7. I make the bed every single day. Now if only I could pass that habit onto my children…

  8. I love to listen to 15 minutes of my audio book in bed (set to sleep timer). I’m usually too tired to pick up a “real” book so I love doing this. You are right about the alcohol – on the nights where I have nothing, I have the best sleep in the world!

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