1. Set a consistent bedtime
Making sure to set a consistent bedtime helps to establish healthy sleep habits. This means going to bed and waking up at the same time every day, even on weekends or days off. People should find an amount of sleep that works for their individual needs, usually between 7 and 9 hours for adults.
2. Dim the lights
Light is known to interfere with the body’s natural production of melatonin, which helps us fall asleep. To help promote sleep, dim or turn off the lights in your home at least an hour before bedtime and don't use electronic devices for at least 30 minutes prior.
3. Take five minutes for yourself
Take a few moments to relax from the day by meditating, stretching, journaling, or simply taking deep breaths. This can help clear one's mind and prepare them for a good night's sleep.
4. Give yourself permission not to think
It's common for our minds to race when we're trying to get ready for bed. Instead of allowing this to take over, give yourself permission not to think. Let your mind wander and simply observe the thoughts that come up without judgment or analysis.
5. Stretch out those kinks
Doing some light stretching before bed can help relieve tension in the body and help one relax into a deeper sleep. Some popular stretches include gentle neck rolls, shoulder shrugs, calf raises, and forward folds.
6. Unplug from technology
It’s important to unplug from electronic devices at least an hour before bedtime as the blue light emitted from these items can interfere with our circadian rhythms and disrupt sleep cycles. Taking a break from social media and other sources of stimulation helps us disconnect from our busy lives and can help us relax and get ready for bed.
7. Read a book or listen to soothing music
Reading can be a great way to take one’s mind off of their day and drift into a peaceful sleep. Soothing instrumental music is also an option, as it helps create a calming atmosphere in the bedroom.
8. Reflect on the day
Before getting into bed, spend some time reflecting on the day and thinking about what one is grateful for. This exercise can help clear the mind of negative thoughts so that one can focus on restful sleep instead.
9. Have a snack to give your body energy for sleep
Eating something small like popcorn, bananas, or toast before bedtime can give the body energy to sustain sleep. Avoid sugary or heavy foods, as they can interfere with sleep.
10. Write down any problems that may be on your mind, and plan how you will deal with them tomorrow
Sometimes trying to solve a problem before bed can keep one awake all night. Writing out the issue and possible solutions for the morning can help ease worries about it so that one is able to get a good night’s rest