What you do in your waking hours will certainly affect your tomorrow. But did you know that your sleeping hours are probably as important too? Yes, that’s a fact because if you don’t sleep well, then your productivity and health is sure to take a dip. The total number of hours you sleep, and the quality of your sleep both matters.
Here are a few tips to help you sleep better.
- Caffeine – Nicotine, alcohol and caffeine will interfere with your sleep. Caffeine is a stimulant that will make it difficult for you to doze off. Your last cup of coffee should be 4 hours before sleep minimum. Stay away from cola, chocolate and tea as well. Similarly, avoid smoking just before bed time as well.
- The right sleeping environment – The room has to be dark, cool and quiet. This will help you sleep better. You will find a perfect example in nature – bats. There is a good reason why you will find them in the darkest corner of caves during the day. Use an earplug if there is noise. Use a heavy curtain and eye mask for blocking all light.
- Sleep when you are truly tired – It is good to go to bed around a particular time every night, but are you truly tired? You cannot doze off so easily if you are not really tired. Read or listen to music for a while. But don’t watch television for too long. E-readers with backlight can disrupt your sleep. You may not feel tired if you are currently leading a sedentary lifestyle. Join a health club. At least do some running or cycling. Your health will improve, and you will sleep better. But be sure not to exercise immediately before your bed time.
- Mattress and pillow – Your pillow and mattress won’t last for a lifetime. Change them from time to time. And of course it is essential to take good care of them as well. Get a side sleeping pillow to support your neck’s natural curve. You may wake up with shoulder pain or a stiff neck. Acute pain can wake you up in the middle of the night as well. Most people sleep on their sides, and sleeping experts and many doctors say that this is the healthiest position. So change your position if you sleep on your back or stomach. You may use a leg pillow as well.
- Nix the naps – Try not to sleep in the day. If you are feeling tired and need a power nap, make sure that it is not more than 20 minutes max.
- Wear right clothing – You have to feel very comfortable to sleep well. The right pillow and mattress will help, but you need correct clothing too. Light cotton clothing is the best.
- Try to relax – It’s going to be difficult to unwind in the night if your brain is over-stimulated in the day. We are constantly busy in the day trying to meet tight deadlines, doing meetings, making presentations, checking mails and such others. This can tire us out. The tension and stress is bad for us. Try to relax as much as you can. Take a break from time to time. Meditate for just 10 minutes before going to bed. This should cool you down.