Are you someone that feels constantly tired? Do you have enough hours in the day for a decent kip?
When we’re busy all the time, we struggle even more to drift off in the first place, and many of us can find ourselves jolting upright in the middle of the night in a panic about something or another.
If you find yourself nodding along as you read, then chances are, you haven’t created the right sleep space. And since National Sleep Awareness is now drawing to close, we’re helping you to find yours.
Finding your sleep space is more than just a comfy mattress and a billion thread-count sheets. it’s about making the right environment and ambience for you to gently slip to the land of nod. Here are 6 quick tips for making sure you get the greatest night’s sleep you possibly can!
1. We struggle to sleep well when we’re either too full or too hungry, as our body is unsettled. You should enjoy a filling supper at least 3 hours before bed. Avoiding spicy foods in the evening can also help as our stomach can get uncomfortable afterwards.
2. This may be the hardest for us to abide by, but you should avoid using electronic devices, such as smartphones, tvs, tablets and laptops, in the hour up until bedtime. The screens emit the type of light that encourages our brain to stay awake and alert. Try spending this last hour doing activities such as making lunch for the next day, hand writing any notes you need to make (rather than sending emails), or better still, chill out and unwind with a book.
3. Avoid caffeine in the evenings at all cost! Caffeine can cause sleep problems for up to 12 hours after consumption so cut out tea, coffee, energy drinks and cola. Or you could opt for caffeine-free versions. You should also steer away from high levels of sugar too, as this can be a stimulant.
4. On the subject of drinking, limit the amount that you drink in the evenings. The last thing you need is an interrupted sleep because you need a bathroom break. Try getting into a routine of emptying your bladder right before you go to bed to limit the need to get up in the middle of the night.
5. If you have tomorrow’s presentation, today’s meeting and next week’s project still swirling around your head when you finally hit the pillow, then it’s probably a good idea to start a form of meditation. Now, I’m not telling you to sit cross-legged, fingers together, doing a little hum; You just need to climb into your headspace. There are plenty of great ‘Mindfulness’ apps to get you started and many of them have tracks on mindfulness for sleep. ‘Headspace’ by Andy Puddicombe is a great one to get you started and it’s loved by celebs worldwide, including Emma Watson!
6. Create a sleep space that you can actually get to sleep in, with the right blind or curtains over your window. For years, we’ve championed the use of blackout for bedrooms, but there’s now an even better innovation on the market – DuoShade blinds. If you haven’t heard of them before, the honeycomb construction act as tiny air pockets. This means that they keep your room warm in winter and cool in summer, making them very energy efficient and energy-saving. They’re also blackout, whilst the structure of the blind also acts as a sound barrier, giving you noise reduction from the outside world.
If you’d like more information on National Sleep Awareness Week, the National Sleep Foundation or the UK Sleep Council, click the links below.