By Sandy Getzky
Not getting enough rest? If your mind has trouble settling down at night, you can easily end up tossing and turning instead of getting much needed sleep. Instead of worrying about an argument you had with a co-worker or what to do about that stubborn nail fungus problem, focus on helping your mind calm down for the night. Here are five things you should do before you go to bed each night.
1. Stay Away From Electronics
Spend a couple hours before bedtime with a good book instead of staring at your TV, phone or laptop screen. These electronic items can be very distracting and stimulate your brain. The light from the screen can also make it more difficult for your brain to enter sleep mode. In addition to avoiding screen time, keep the lights in your bedroom or living room dim.
Meditation can help calm your mind before bedtime. Spend 10 or 15 minutes doing a simple meditation or breathing exercise to help clear your head and relax your mind and body. This might be challenging to do at first, but you’ll be a pro at it in time, as long as you practice. You don’t have to actively try to clear thoughts from your mind during meditation. Instead, let them flow, but don’t pay attention to them.
3. Lower the Temperature
Turn your thermostat down a few degrees to get more restful sleep. Being warm and cozy might sound nice, but being in a room that’s too stuffy or warm can interfere with sleep. Your body will enjoy better slumber when your bedroom is kept at a cooler and consistent temperature. If you’re a little too cool, it’s fine to curl up under your blankets.
4. Write It Down
Don’t let your worries and concerns float around in your head and keep you from sleeping. Take about 15 to 20 minutes to write them down in a journal or notebook before you go to bed. Don’t think about them too much; just jot down the issues that are bothering you. Getting them onto paper can help clear your mind, so you can sleep better.
5. Avoid Heavy Foods
Eating a heavy snack close to bedtime could keep you awake longer. If your stomach is rumbling, eat a light snack that’s just enough to satisfy your hunger. Just make sure your light snack isn’t something filled with sugar.
About the Author
Sandy Getzky is an associate editor at ProveMyMeds, a public health and education startup focused on producing helpful resources concerning the treatment of common ailments. With a background in nursing and a passion for natural healing practices, Sandy brings a balance of traditional and alternative medicine to her writing and research topics.
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