Do you often wake up tired and grumpy, setting the scene for the whole day ahead? Whether you struggle to fall asleep or keep waking up throughout the night, we’ve got some tips to help you get a quality sleep and wake up feeling ready for the day ahead.
Night time tips: Getting a good night’s sleep
Building your sleep haven: Is your environment conducive to a good night’s sleep? Your room should be a calming colour, like a pale blue, without any electronics – particularly those with constant lights on. You should also invest in blackout blinds or curtains to stop car/street lights and morning light coming in.
Think before you drink. Even if you think caffeine doesn’t affect you, you should avoid it within six hours of bedtime. If it doesn’t sleep onset, it can still disturb your deep sleep throughout the night. The same goes for alcohol. While it may help you to sleep faster, alcohol causes sleep fragmentation.
Quit smoking. Nicotine is an even stronger brain stimulant than caffeine. This combined with nicotine withdrawal symptoms, which can start two or three hours after the last puff, can lead to difficulty falling and staying asleep.
Avoid proteins or fatty foods before bed. These take extra effort from your body to digest, which may keep you awake.
Time your exercise. Not enough exercising can lead to sleeping difficulties, but exercising too close to bedtime (within four hours) can stop you from getting to sleep as your body takes a while to wind down.
Warm up your feet. If you have poor circulation, wearing socks will help to regulate your core temperature so you’ll easily fall to sleep.
Wind down. Allocate some time before bed to think about your day and work on your to-do list for tomorrow – that way your mind isn’t racing when you hit the pillow.
Try soothing aromas. Have a relaxing bath before bed, adding a blend of lavender, frankincense and patchouli oils. Epsom salts will also give your muscles a relaxing treat. Alternatively, you could add a couple of drops of relaxing Lavender essential oil when washing your towels and linen. Warm your towels while you’re in the bath so you get a hint of lavender to relax you before bed.
Make sure you’re getting the right minerals. Magnesium and Potassium both aid in sleeping well, so ensure you are getting enough of these minerals. You can get them from green leafy vegetables, potatoes, bananas or nuts and nut butter.
Stick to a regular sleep schedule. Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day.
In the morning: Wake up your body
Exposing yourself to bright daylight is one of the best and most effective things you can do to wake yourself up. When your brain sees the bright morning light, it will take it as a cue to stop producing melatonin – the hormone that regulates sleep. Open your blinds/curtains as soon as the alarm goes off, or get outside for an early morning walk.
Blend together a few drops of bergamot, grapefruit and lime essential oils, then add to a loofah or face washer and give your body a gentle scrub in the shower to wake up your senses.
Before you head out the door, dab on a few drops of rosemary, lemon and basil essential oils to your wrist and forehead to reduce fatigue and increase concentration.