Cheat Sheet: How to get better sleep
Running on 8 cups of coffee to kick start the gusto in your day?!?
Check out these tips on getting more quality shut-eye (and why you really need to make it happen).
Cool it with the caffeine
This includes coffee, black or green tea, cocoa, chocolate, soft drinks like Coke and Pepsi and cigarettes. Caffeine can interfere with your ability to fall asleep for up to eight hours after your last sip, so cut down on your intake and avoid it at night if you want to sleep better tonight.
Invest in a quality mattress and pillows
You spend a big chunk of your life in bed whether it be resting, sleeping or relaxing so it is important to have good quality and comfortable bedding. If you don't get the quality sleep you need, you won't perform at your highest level during your waking hours. Your supportive mattress should be replaced every 5 years and pillows replaced every 2 years.
Keep your bedroom dark
Our bodies need darkness for production of melatonin (the hormone the helps with regulating our sleep). So cover up any electronics or devices that have lights, use dark curtain or blinds on the windows to block out street or sun light or use an eye mask.
Keep your phone, laptop or electronic devices out of the bedroom
I know it’s tough, we all want to scroll and scroll and scroll through our facebook, pinterest and twitter but having your eyes glued to your electronic devices are too stimulating to the brain and interfere with your sleep by disrupting your natural melatonin production.
Avoid drinking anything (water, herbal tea, milk etc) an hour before bedtime
Once you’re sound asleep, you don't want to be woken because of a urgent need to visit the bathroom! So it’s best to avoid drinking anything (water, herbal tea, milk, wint etc) an hour before bedtime.
Try the 4-7-8 breath technique
The 4-7-8 breath relaxation exercise is brilliant for calming the mind and body before bed or if you're feeling stressed or anxious about sleep. Simply close your mouth and take a deep inhale through your nose for four counts, hold that breath for seven counts, and then exhale through your mouth for eight counts. Repeat this pattern until you have completed four full breaths. Check out this demonstaion by the 4-7-8 master Dr Weil to completely nail the technique.
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