Have you also developed sleep issues over the last year? I sure have… for the first time in years, I’m waking up in the middle of the night with my mind racing! And forget trying to fall asleep at a decent time – it feels like years of great sleep habits are out the window! Most of the people I speak to are exhausted. And this exhaustion can exacerbate inflammation, weight gain, and chronic disease. Moreover, good sleep will do what even an expensive anti-aging serum cannot! I say it’s time to reset your snooze.
But you can’t cheat sleep. Adults need between seven and nine hours of sleep consistently. The key to a successful sleep routine is to regulate your circadian rhythm – your body’s internal clock. Your circadian rhythm is partly regulated by your body’s natural melatonin production – and when life’s disruptions get in the way, our melatonin cycles can be thrown off. We need to train our bodies to not just sleep more but also sleep better. Here are some great tips I’ve compiled alongside a few best practices Natrol and I suggest to #ResetYourSnooze:
- Create a Sleep Routine: Establishing a consistent sleep-wake schedule helps regulate your circadian rhythms, and increases the quality of sleep. This means going to bed at the same time every night. But it also means creating a new nighttime routine. There’s no right or wrong way to create a routine, though. Just think “soothing”. Here’s the thing – if we don’t create a routine and leave it to chance, it’s likely that you’ll find yourself glued to a screen or folding laundry long past your intended bedtime.
- Plan To Go To Bed 30 Minutes Earlier: Even if you set a bedtime, it’s likely that you’ll get distracted by something, which will eat into your precious sleep hours. So if you know you need to be in bed by a certain time (say 10pm), aim for 9.30. This way, you have a tiny bit of wiggle room for those inevitable distractions.
- Create Boundaries: Unless you create healthy boundaries with the people around you, it will be hard to make it to bed on time. Think about it: You say goodnight to your partner and they want to show you a cute video on their phone. Or your teenage daughter suddenly declares that this is the ONLY time that she can have that discussion that she’s been putting off. Maybe someone texts or calls you for a chat. Creating healthy boundaries means that you need to communicate to others clearly. You need to tell them exactly what you need – and get a yes or no answer. I explain to my family that I need to be in bed by 9.30 on weekday nights because I arise at 6am. I ask that they respect this by NOT drawing me into a TV show, heated discussions, or anything else once the 9 o’clock hour passed. It takes a lot of resolve, but this is now my nighttime routine. And they respect it. I also like to power off my devices so that I don’t receive calls or texts.
- Avoid Bright Screens 60 Minutes Before Bedtime: Exposure to bright LED lights such as smartphones, laptops, and TV screens before bed can interfere with your body’s natural release of melatonin. Start a beautiful new digital detox routine an hour before bed: make a soothing tea, grab a journal, read a hard copy book, or do some gentle restorative yoga.
- Consider Taking a Melatonin Supplement: When you need a little extra help, Natrol® Melatonin can help you fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer so you wake up feeling rested.† Natrol Melatonin is the #1 drug-free sleep aid brand in America.^ I particularly love Natrol 3am Melatonin these days… Perfect during those occasional middle of the night wake-ups, Natrol® 3am Melatonin helps you fall asleep faster.†* And I always keep Natrol® Melatonin 5mg in the house, particularly leading up to Daylight Savings Time – no lost hour of sleep here!
- Create a Calm, Dark Bedroom Oasis: A noise-free and dark bedroom environment can help you sleep better throughout the night. Mask noise pollution with calming sounds or earplugs and block out disruptive light with darkening curtains or a sleep mask. You may want to try an air purifier, too. I have one that makes a soft, whirring sound, which cuts out other annoying sounds around me. Others may prefer to listen to a white noise machine.
- Sip A Tiny Cup Of Soothing Tea: I love to drink a soothing tea after dinner and before bed (keep in mind some tea can be caffeinated so make your tea decisions based on your own caffeine tolerance). I drink ¼ – ½ cup of chamomile or a DIY sleep tea blend.
- Exercise Daily: Walking as little as 10 minutes a day can help, but I recommend aiming for at least 30 minutes a day. I love my rebounder. I can rebound inside and out. Even on a busy day, it helps cleanse my lymphatic system, exercises my entire body, and puts me in a great mood!
This post is sponsored by Natrol®, but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.
^Nielsen, xAOC, 52 weeks ending 1/23/2021
* Melatonin is a solution for occasional sleeplessness.
|†These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.|