The hectic pace of modern life can make it difficult to wind down in the evening and prepare our minds and bodies for rest. Rather than tossing and turning in bed, what should you do if you can’t sleep to quiet your mind and get some much-needed Zzzs? Read on for a few tips on how to relax your mind and calm your body so you can sleep comfortably.
Can’t Sleep at Night?
Everyone has a hard time falling asleep from time to time, but chronic lack of good, restorative rest can leave us exhausted and unable to live our best lives during the day. Bad sleep can lead to poor concentration, lack of focus, and an overall feeling of depletion. Over time, poor sleep habits can cause health problems that can affect your whole system, like heart problems, memory issues, and even your mental health. That’s why getting a good night’s rest is one of the most important aspects of Self-Care to keep your mind clear and your body healthy. But what to do when you can’t sleep?
If you can’t sleep at night, try a nightly “sleep hygiene” routine. This could mean making sure your bedroom is cool and dark, using a white-noise machine to drown out loud sounds or snoring, or trying a sleep mask to block out extra light.
What to Do When You Can’t Sleep: 8 Tips
- Spray lavender essential oil around your pillow. Lavender — as well as clary sage, chamomile, and sandalwood — has calming properties.
- Try meditating in a quiet space for a few minutes before bed to clear your mind.
- Take a warm shower one hour before bed. This increases your body temperature, which has been shown to encourage good sleep.
- Turn off your screens! One way to prevent your phone from distracting you is to place it out of sight — try the Digital Detox Phone Case to make sure you can unwind without interruptions.
- Avoid caffeinated beverages after noon. Caffeine can linger in your system for many hours after consumption, and may significantly disrupt your sleep patterns.
- Looking at bright blue light from electronics will only make it more difficult to fall asleep. Avoid working at your computer or your tablet in the hour or so before bedtime.
- Try sitting in a quiet place — outside of your bed — and reading a book for a few minutes. You might even try something a bit boring to help lull you into a state of relaxation.
- Listen to a quiet podcast or “sleep story” app designed to relax the mind and encourage sleep.
Good sleep is an important part of Self-Care. There are lots of things that get in the way of good, sound sleep. Screens, stress, and diet can all contribute to lack of shut-eye — leaving you exhausted and cranky during the day. But when you can’t sleep at night, there are ways to help quiet your mind and find that sweet spot of serenity and comfort that lets you fall asleep naturally.
Follow a consistent routine, practice good sleep hygiene habits, and listen to your body’s own rhythms. These practices help you develop a nighttime ritual so you can disconnect from the stress of the day. With quality rest, you wake up refreshed, revitalized, and ready to face your day.
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