It is four o’clock in the morning and that is not the time I woke up because how can I wake up if I haven’t had any sleep yet?
I know I am not the only one with this problem, and like me, you’re also wondering how to sleep earlier.
Some have insomnia while some just have difficulty sleeping early. Even if we know the many great benefits of getting enough sleep and the equally numerous bad effects of sleep deprivation, giving up Netflix and tucking in before midnight can be such a pain.
Tailoring your nightly routine to sleep earlier can boost your overall well-being by improving the quality of sleep and making sure you get the appropriate hours of sleep your body needs.
The Bed and Bedroom
Choose the right mattress. Picking an appropriate mattress is the first building block of a good sleep. A mattress that’s too firm can push on your body’s main pressure points.
A mattress that’s too soft won’t support your body’s main pressure points. Both can give you a body ache upon waking up.
The best way to pick the appropriate mattress is to lie down on it for 15 to 30 minutes in your usual sleeping position. If you feel as if you’re floating and don’t end up with body aches, you got your perfect match.
Use the bed only for its purpose. The bed is for resting, sleeping and having sex.
Mixing bed with work discourages sleeping on time because you’re still using your brain before sleep.
Do not use your brain cells before bedtime especially for stimulating or activities—working, talking about emotional issues, reading stimulating materials, or watching stressful shows.
Get an alarm clock instead of using your phone because it will just lure you into checking your notifications. These will improve your association of sleep with the bedroom.
Dim the lights and keep it cool. Change your bedroom light to soft or warm types of less than 3000 Kelvin in color temperature.
Or just turn off the lights.
Use curtains, shades or an eye mask to keep light out and not stimulate your brain to wake up. Also, set the thermostat to a cool 60-75F or cooler depending on what feels good for you.
You and Your Activities
Establish a consistent pre-bedtime routine and sleep schedule. Set a sleep-wake schedule for expecting sleep at a fixed time every night.
Stick to it even in the weekends so going to bed and getting up in the morning will be a breeze. Sleeping and waking up the same time every day is the best way to establish an internal clock.
You can set an alarm at night around 15 minutes before bed time. This will alert you when it’s time to wash up and put on your pajamas and get into a relaxed mood so you can easily transition to sleep.
Keep evening food and chemicals to a minimum. Have dinner a couple of hours before bed to avoid indigestion.
If you feel hungry in the middle of the night, opt for dairy, carbohydrates or anything that you know won’t ruin your sleep. You might be tempted to resort to drinking a downer like alcohol, but this can disrupt sleep cycles late into the night especially if consumed too close to bedtime.
Obviously, you have to stay away from the famous stimulant, caffeine, for six hours before your bedtime. Nicotine also has a stimulating effect so it’s better to keep away from smoking if you intend to sleep early.
Shut off the electronics. In connection to creating a more sleep inducing bedroom, sleeping early has a lot to do with your habits.
Set a time to turn off your laptop, television and smart phone. The blue light emitted by gadgets disrupts sleep. Keep off of your smart phones.
Set your connectivity to power off at a certain time and reply to emails in the morning. It will not only encourage you to sleep early but also increase your productivity the next day. Charge your phones and computers outside the bedroom.
Your attitude towards your bedroom and towards sleep has a lot to do about how to sleep earlier. Knowing the value and importance of sleep will encourage you to have a healthy sleep-wake habit that will increase your productivity and improve your overall well-being. Your mornings will definitely be better even if you’re no morning person.