It’s Sleep Awareness Week (March 10-16, 2019), and while some may use that as an excuse to catch more ZZZs or take a midday nap, this proves a chance to show just how important sleep is for overall health. A healthy sleep schedule can make a big difference in your quality of life and your productivity.
How can you sleep easy to prime you for a productive workday? Here are six tips for a better night’s sleep.
Keep a Consistent Sleep Schedule
Consistency is key for sleep, and your body knows it. Do you tend to get tired and feel awake at the same time every day? That’s thanks to your circadian rhythm, your body’s 24-hour internal clock that keeps your brain in tune to your cycles between sleepiness and alertness. Listen to your circadian rhythm and try not to deviate from the time you go to sleep or wake up by more than an hour. The 2019 Sleep in America Poll found that those who keep the same evening bedtimes and morning wake ups are 1.5 times more likely to feel well-rested. That can lead to more productivity during the work week.
Eat Right to Sleep Well
It may come as a surprise to know that what you eat can also affect how you sleep. Fitspot rounds up the 14 foods to help you fall asleep and the 10 to avoid for a better night’s sleep.
Try Meditating Before Bed
There’s no shortage of benefits for meditation, and a prime time to try it out is just before bed. Fitspot’s partner Whil offers a series of guided meditations geared toward professionals. Many of these focus on turning your attention to the breath, visualizing sleep, and relaxing the body. If you’re interested in bringing Whil to the workplace, contact us to find out about our partner discounts.
Turn Off Your Mind
Do you ever have the feeling that your mind is running a million miles a minute, and then the moment you lay your head on the pillow, your mind floods with thoughts? That’s normal, you just have to remind yourself to relax. Write out your to-do list to get tasks off your mind. If you are still having trouble falling asleep, thinking about it will only make it harder to unwind. Try moving to another room with dim lights and do something relaxing until you are drowsy enough to go back to bed.
Keep Your Bedroom a Space for Sleep Only
Your bedroom should be just that, a room for your bed, designated for sleep. Don’t cram your office desk in the corner. Don’t watch television in bed. The less stimulating your bedroom is, the better. Try using blackout curtains to block light, turn the clock away from you, and leave electronics off and out of reach. Use a sound machine if you live in a noisy place to help drown out noise, and opt for a constant sound. If you don’t have a sound machine, there are several different sound apps available for cell phones. Another tip – keep your bedroom temperature between 60 to 67 degrees for optimal sleep.
If You’re Still Tired During the Workday, Try a Napaccino
The Napaccino – dubbed by Daniel Pink, author of “WHEN, the Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing”, is a great way to reap the benefits of a nap without the nap hangover. Studies show that naps between 10 and 20 minutes boost alertness and mental function. Pink’s method requires you to find your trough, known as the time when your energy levels dip, and to capitalize on the moment with a quick nap. Find a quiet space, use an eye mask, earplugs, and a comfy couch, down a cup of coffee, then set an alarm for 25 minutes. The caffeine will hit your system right when it’s time to wake up, and you’ll be primed and ready to go!