I hope y’all had a wonderful Halloween celebrating with family and friends. We were lucky enough to spend the weekend with friends at home in LA and had such a great time!
Now that Halloween is over, I feel no shame being in full-on holiday spirit! I’m listening to Christmas Classics as I write this, lol! Anyone else like to celebrate Christmas for as long as possible?!
Last week, I spent the week at home alone in LA and had quite a bit of trouble sleeping those first few nights. Whenever Matt’s away, I find that my sleep gets off track due to my nerves. I took to Snapchat and asked what some of your favorite sleep hacks are and got some great responses. I also had a few of you ask that I write a blog post and share the wealth of info. Today, we’re going to dive into tips on getting a good night’s sleep.
I’ve been very blessed in that I’ve been a great sleeper most of my life. I’m the type of person who can fall asleep pretty much anywhere. I definitely require my solid 8 hours though. If I get less than that, I’m running on E most of the day.
When I don’t get enough sleep, I get sassy. It’s basically the sleepy version of being “hungry”. We don’t operate at our optimal level when we’re tired, and sometimes we can barely operate at all when we’re exhausted. When you’re well rested you think better, act better and look better. Our bodies were designed to require rest in order to recharge, but sometimes we get busy and put that necessity on the back burner.
If I polled my regular readers about their sleep habits, I would bet good money that the majority of us would say that we feel like we’re: A) regularly tired and B) don’t get enough rest. My question is, why don’t we do something about it? I know, I know… We’re busy. We have all of these demands and not enough hours in the day. Let me ask you this though. what’s more important to you in the grand scheme of things? Your health or your to-do list? For me, it’s definitely my health.
Here’s the thing… Studies show that those of us who sleep more, live longer. In fact, I’ve read that people who sleep less than 5 hours a night are more likely to suffer from serious diseases. Don’t believe me? Google it for yourself. Bottom line? Sleep is essential for our bodies.
Here are some tips and tricks that help me to wind down and get a good night’s sleep.
15 Tips for a Good Night’s Sleep
- Take a long, hot bath. If you read last week’s post about dealing with menstrual cramps, then you know that baths are my cure for almost everything. There’s something so relaxing about a hot bath before bed. If you have a hot tub, that can do the trick (minus the bubble bath). A lot of times, my inability to fall asleep is due to a stressful day or situation, so the ability to soak in the tub and relax can help to melt away the worries of the day. Here’s my favorite bubble bath.
- Lavender Oil. I’m a big supporter of essential oils. I’m not highly educated on all of the different brands, types, blends or uses, but one oil I’m very familiar with is lavender. We use this by sprinkling a few drops on our pillows at bedtime, add it to our bath water or apply several drops in the palms of our hands and inhale deeply. I feel like this calming scent really does help me unwind. I was recently sent this amazing pillow spray that smells divine and you should absolutely check it out.
- Blackout curtains. Are you sensitive to light? Or do you have a wonky sleep schedule due to work? If so, investing in a quality set of blackout curtains can help you stay asleep longer.
- Sleep mask. This one is a must for me. I started snoozing with a sleep mask a couple of years ago and now there’s no turning back. It helps me to stay asleep longer by keeping the light out of my peepers. It also deters me from checking the clock or my phone throughout the night. I love this sleep mask from Slip and I’m currently using and loving this sleep mask from This Works.
- Sipping hot tea. I’m not a tea drinker, but my hubby is. There are certain blends I will drink on occasion, but this is one thing that is highly suggested for troubled sleepers. The most popular choices are Sleepy Time Tea and Chamomile for bedtime use.
- Getting on a sleep schedule. I am the worst at this one. I can easily stay up past 2am every night just futzing around on the internet, reading, working or watching tv. One of the most suggested tips for those who struggle with getting good sleep is having a regular bedtime and wake up time. I desperately want to set this one into action, but with Matt’s filming schedule being all over the place every single day… That is almost impossible. Maybe one day I’ll hang up my night owl ways and practice better sleep discipline!
- Creating a peaceful, comfortable sleep environment. This one is so important and the most personal. I say it’s personal because what is peaceful and calming to me may not be the same for you. First off, your bedroom should be a place of relaxation. That means your walls should be a calming, and most likely neutral, color. Same with your bedding. I’m a huge advocate of splurging on quality bedding. You spend more time in your bed than probably any other one place every day of the week, so it should be luxurious! For me, luxurious means sleeping in a big, white, super soft cloud-like bed. That also means investing in a good quality mattress that checks all of your boxes. Candles in my bedroom really helps to create a peaceful, spa-like ambiance that I love.
- Comfortable temperature. Once you get married, this becomes an issue if one of you likes to sleep in the cold and the other doesn’t. I hate being cold at night, but I also hate waking up having a hot flash in the middle of the night because the temperature is too high. Finding your perfect sleep temperature is important for a peaceful sleep.
- Limit caffeine and fluid intake. For me, I know not to drink coffee after 6pm or 7pm if I’m wanting to get in bed at a decent time. That’s a no-brainer… But the thing I often forget? Drinking too much water too close to bedtime. I hate waking up in the middle of the night to use the restroom! This is another one I need to be cognizant of!
- Don’t eat too late. You’re not going to get good sleep if you’re feeling full from a big meal. In fact, there’s a good chance you’ll end up with indigestion if you eat too heavy at bedtime. Keep an eye on the time when you’re having your dinner to allow plenty of time for digestion before your head hits that pillow.
- Exercise regularly. I usually get my best sleep when I’m physically tired. Exercise helps to keep your body in a better sleep rhythm.
- Create a bedtime routine. I find that having a routine that I do every night at bedtime prepares my brain for shut eye. It’s like I’m reminding my mind to wind it down once I start my nighttime routine.
- Cut out eye strain before bedtime. It’s much harder to turn off your brain and relax your eyes if you’re laying in your pitch dark room staring at your lit up laptop screen or cell phone for 30 minutes. Do you really need to read one more political Facebook post that will only leave you feeling annoyed? Nope. Skip it. Go to bed, social media will be there, along with all your Facebook friends dirty laundry, tomorrow morning.
- Get a grip on your stress. If you’re stressin’ about something as you hit the hay, chances are you’re not going to be able to get that restful sleep you so desperately need. Check your stress at the door if possible.
- Listen to an audio book, spa music or sound machine. Listening to peaceful music or an audio book knocks me out in less than 5 minutes usually. It’s not something that I need, unless I’m on an airplane or in a noisy hotel. Some people do need sound help in order to sleep. Check out sound machines on Amazon or even a small fan to create white noise. Or if noise is a distraction, consider training yourself to sleep with ear plugs.
I’ve read mostly negative information about naps during the day. I’m a big napper. I learned that hobby from my Mawmaw, who regularly took her siestas (as she referred to them). I personally think nap time should be a part of our normal day, but clearly I’m not in the majority with that one, lol!
You’re up! What tips, tricks and hacks do you have and use to get a solid night of sleep? I love hearing from you! I learn so much through your comments both on here and on social media.