Evenings can be a daunting time for those of us who have trouble sleeping. Iâ€™ve received countless questions over time on how to get a better nightâ€™s sleep. Whether youâ€™re up worrying through the night, a restless sleeper, or just have trouble falling asleep, these tips are for you!
1. Keep Active During the Day: One of the most proven ways to sleep better at night is to get a light amount of exercise during the day, whether a long walk, lightly cleaning the house, doing laundry, or even stretching. Vigorous exercise is even better for sleep â€“ if youâ€™re up for it, try yoga, running, or my personal favourite for mental health, swimming (with a visit to the sauna or steam room after!)
2. Create a Bedtime Routine: It might sound juvenile, but establishing a set routine that occurs each night before bed is proven to send triggers to your brain, which makes you feel more sleepy. Whether itâ€™s reading a book for 30 minutes, listening to calming music, or writing in your journal, this activity will likely become enjoyable for you in time.
3. Drink Something Warm: Warm milk, hot water with lemon, and herbal tea all have something in common. They all have the ability to make us feel sleepy â€“ and thatâ€™s not just because milk contains tryptophan (which can be encouraged with foods that are high in carbohydrates such as a cookie) and together produce serotonin in the brain. These physiological benefits are outweighed by the psychological association of something warm with comfort, relaxation, and health. If you include a warm drink in your bedtime routine, you can also reinforce sleepiness!
4. Find an Outlet to Deal with Worry: Whether seeking the help of a therapist or friend to help you sort out whatâ€™s bothering you, writing in a journal, or tackling the worrisome thoughts head on by addressing them, itâ€™s important to deal with problems when they come up. Otherwise, they can follow you into the bedroom, and that can have a negative impact on not only your sleeping habits, but also intimacy with your partner.
5. Practice the Art of Self-Care: Find a place or environment that helps you calm your mind and visit it often. My personal favourites? Attending yoga class, visiting the spa on a regular basis, taking walks in nature, and even going for massage therapy improve overall relaxation, which in turn helps you get a better sleep.