For most people, getting eight hours-worth of sleep every night is akin to an achievement. In today’s rapid-dash world, making time for sleep seems to be the last priority for most people. Work, life and relationships often take up all the time we have leaving us stressed and anxious when sleep comes knocking. Technology too has played a huge role in increasing the amount of stress we feel throughout the day and towards bedtime.
The sheer inundation of technology, be it smartphones, computers, laptops or even tablets, all around us has made distraction, and with it stress, easy to come by. The more time you spend checking your phone every night the less sleep you are likely to get. The blue light from the screens has been associated with sleep deprivation along with many stress issues.
There are, however, ways that you can cut down your activity before bed and relax. Here are some tips to help you do just that:
Research has shown that warm showers work amazingly to help your body cool down before bed. However it is important to note that you need to have at least an hour after the shower. Hot water opens up your pores and allows your body to breathe after a long day. It also relaxes your muscles and helps reduce your core temperature, thus inducing sleep. It would be a wise idea not to touch your phone after the shower, just to make sure you fall asleep.
Cut All Tech an Hour Before Bed
While it can be really tempting to check that ping on your phone, make a promise to yourself to never check the phone or any other technological device before bed. Create a routine that cuts these elements out completely. It could be something as simple as meditating, writing your daily journal or even reading a book. Some even prefer listening to their favourite music before falling asleep.
Focus on Your Breath
A simple meditation technique, focusing on your breath allows you to relax your body completely and distracts you from your mental chaos. Lie down in bed, close your eyes and simply focus on your breath. Breathing in and out are involuntary actions, while it may be easy to get distracted with thoughts now and then, do not stress too much about it. Keep refocusing on the breath.
A lot has been said about the benefits of maintaining a daily journal. Writing helps provide a brilliant cathartic outlet for you. This can help you articulate your problems and figure out the silver lining in a seemingly bad situation. Writing is a brilliantly therapeutic exercise for those who find themselves riddled with stress. It can help you work through your issues and go to bed with a clear head.
When you lie down in bed, try and strain and relax different muscle groups progressively, starting from the toes up. This will help you work through the entire body in a slow methodical fashion and help you feel much more relaxed. Known as progressive muscle relaxation, it is a well-known and much appreciated technique to help people get deeper sounder sleep.
Create the Environment
The human body needs to know that it is bedtime. If you keep feeding it stimuli after stimuli chances are that it will only nod off when totally fatigued and result in very tired sleep. Darkness is essential for sleep, make sure that your room is sufficiently dark, have a small, zero watt light if you need one. An eye-pad is also a good idea. There are people who prefer soothing sounds while they fall asleep, try and play some if you are of the mind. Sleep pattern is all about behaviour and altering your behaviour and environment is the best way to de stress before sleep.