With a hectic schedule and a never-ending to-do list, it’s easy to compromise on a good night’s sleep as you try and get through your busy week. Still, skipping the shut-eye can do more than just leave you tired. Poor skin, constant fatigue, and a depressed mood are just a few side effects of low-quality sleep.
GET INTO A HEALTHY SLEEPING ROUTINE
If you’re not getting at least 7-8 hours of quality sleep per night, you may find yourself anxious and confused during the day, losing the ability to concentrate, and even gaining weight. And, if you’re drinking extra caffeine during the day just to stay awake, you’re probably caught in a cycle that means you need more rest and snooze time. How do you get into a healthy sleep routine? Here are some simple strategies to get you into a good sleep schedule and waking up refreshed and rejuvenated:
SLEEP TIP #1: COMMIT TO A SCHEDULE
It’s easy to brush off ‘bedtime’ when you’re busy and you feel like you need to pull an all-nighter to keep up with the day’s projects. However, this can quickly take its toll on your health, and make your days even more stressful and difficult to manage. Plan to head to bed at a specific time each night, and get up at the same time of day whenever possible. This will help establish a healthy sleeping pattern so you can fall asleep naturally with ease.
SLEEP TIP #2: PRACTICE NATURAL RELAXATION
Yoga before bed, a simple stretching routine, or even a short meditation session are great ways to wind down for the night. Avoid taking part in stimulating activities right before bed – this includes working out, watching television, or even surfing the internet. All of these require your mind to concentrate and be active, so you need to pursue activities that are less taxing on your brain. Listening to soothing music, reading a humorous or uplifting book, or simply closing your eyes and relaxing for a few minutes will give you the break from your schedule and make it easy to fall asleep naturally.
SLEEP TIP #3: SKIP THE SUGAR
Say no to sweets before bed. As tempting as that after-dinner dessert may be, you’ll find it harder to get to sleep if you have too much sugar in your system. Enjoy dessert earlier in the day so you’ve used up the extra energy well before bed time. Too much sugar before bed can also make you gain weight easily, so plan your meals in a way that lets you enjoy dessert after lunch or before dinner instead.
SLEEP TIP #4: RELAX WITH AROMATHERAPY
Lavender essential oils are commonly used to treat insomnia and create calm; try a few drops of lavender under your pillow or pick up a lavender sleep spray or a nourishing lavender-infused moisturizer before bed to help you relax naturally.
SLEEP TIP #5: SLEEP WITH AN EYE MASK OR EYE PILLOW
Eye masks can block out any extra light seeping into your room, and the darkness can make it much easier to doze off. Try on a mask with massaging and soothing beads that can reduce morning puffiness and tension around your eyes.
SLEEP TIP #6: TRY A SOOTHING FOOT CREAM
Giving yourself a light foot massage is a great way to relax, and a foot cream can help soothe tired muscles and lower your stress-factor with ease. Pick up some reflexology tips and give yourself a massage with a rich shea-butter-infused foot cream or anything with lavender and chamomile.
Getting a good night’s rest is important for both your body and your mind. A lack of quality sleep can quickly show up in the form of headaches, migraines, and super-high stress levels which make it difficult to function from day-to-day. Start a healthy sleeping pattern with any of these strategies so that you can get up well-rested and ready for the day, every day!
Article Written By: Sabah Karimi; Sabah writes on health, beauty and style for DivaVillage. She gets her beauty sleep with lavender-scented candles, soothing music, and a relaxing spa treatment whenever possible.