If You Want a Good Night's Sleep, Stop Doing These 7 Things
Tonight is the night. You are going to get the best sleep of your life. Set yourself up for a one-way ticket to cozytown by avoiding these daily habits.
Eating These Foods at Night
It is nearly impossible to have a restful night of sleep if you're dealing with gas pains or heartburn. Certain foods will cause digestive issues, so avoid things that are spicy, fried, high in fat, or high in sugar. High-fiber foods can also make you feel bloated, so you might want to avoid beans, broccoli, onions, and bread for dinner — have them at lunch instead.
Caffeine obviously can keep you up, so have your last cup of coffee, green tea, and bite of chocolate by early afternoon. And sorry to say, although that glass of wine or beer can help you relax after a tough day and may even help you fall asleep faster, it'll disrupt your sleep cycle, making staying asleep harder.
Having Dinner Right Before Bed
Aside from what you eat, when you eat is just as important when it comes to getting a good night's sleep. Try to enjoy your last bite of food at least two to three hours before your head hits the pillow. It'll give your body time to digest, so you're not dealing with a gurgling belly. Choose a time to close the kitchen, and stick to it!
Skipping Your Workout
If you want your body to feel completely exhausted when you slip under the covers, make a point to exercise every single day. Focus on four to five days of moderate to vigorous workouts, then two days of active rest, like yoga or going for a walk.
Also keep in mind that one big workout per day isn't enough. Try to stay active throughout the day by using a standing desk, setting stretching breaks every hour, and using the stairs whenever possible. And make sure you finish your workout at least two to three hours before bedtime so that you're not full of energy when your head hits the pillow.
Hitting the Snooze Button
Getting on a regular sleep schedule that you stick to throughout the week, (yes, even on weekends!), will regulate your circadian rhythm and make your body feel rested enough to fall asleep and stay asleep. Wake up and go to bed around the same time every night, aiming for seven to nine hours of sleep, so you won't feel groggy in the morning or during the day. Refrain from hitting the snooze button six times! Set your alarm, and wake up. This will ensure that you're tired enough to fall asleep later that night.
Catching even 10 minutes of zzz's in the middle of the day is a big no-no. Avoid napping at all costs, because it'll make it harder for you to feel tired enough to fall asleep later on. If you're tired in the middle of the day, try going to bed 30 to 60 minutes earlier that night.
Scrolling Through Instagram
That comforting habit of sitting in the dark, under the covers, catching up on Instagram and email seems relaxing. However, the light from the screen can actually trick your brain into thinking it's time to be awake, which makes it harder to unwind and fall asleep. You may also see something that gets you all fired up, which can also disrupt your sleep. Make your bed a no-screen zone.
Going to Bed Stressed
If your mind is unsettled, you'll have a tough time settling your body. If you're worried, upset, or anxious about something, find a way to stop thinking about it and relax. Write about it in a journal, meditate, do some yoga, listen to relaxing music, take a hot shower, try this breathing trick, or read a book by candlelight. Do everything you can to evoke calmness and serenity before drifting off to sleep.