A new year is about to descend upon us, and with it comes the usual talks of self-renewal, the starting of new seasons and resolutions, but most of the time the majority of those resolutions are left by the wayside before Valentine’s Day. But some resolutions don’t have to be huge to be effective, and actually if you want to be successful at turning resolutions into achievements, it’s important to take small steps or do something that’s easy to implement.
Many of us talk a lot about transforming our bodies and eating better, but we often neglect one of the most essential parts of our health, sleep. So in the spirit of New Year’s resolutions, we’re going to focus on improving your sleep routine in 2020, and you can do it in 4 weeks so that by the time February rolls in, you’re rested and in a better headspace. So how do we get better sleep in 4 weeks? Here’s a breakdown of how to turn yourself from a sleep deprived zombie, into a healthy, well-rested and more functional human being.
First of all, it’s important to evaluate where you are before you know where you need to be. So let’s take the time to look at your sleep now. You can invest in a sleep tracker, which can help monitor how deeply you sleep, how many hours of sleep you get and you can also keep track in a notebook how you feel each morning. Next, check out the environment you’re sleeping in. What is the temperature of your room, is the lighting okay and are there limited noise distractions? Also look into whether you’re sleeping in comfortable clothing, and making sure there’s no sleep-inhibiting foods or drinks that you are taking in when you’re close to bedtime. If you’re really stressed out, that can also get in the way of your sleep. This information can give you clues on what needs to be improved.
In week 2, it’s time to start laying the groundwork for better habits, namely improving your environment so that it’s more conducive to a good night’s sleep. For starters, you need to make your room you sleep in feel like a sanctuary, a place you want to spend time in. This doesn’t mean that you should do a full redesign, it just means bringing some softer elements that make you feel relaxed. Limit bright fluorescent lights, get better bedding, get scented candles. You can even get a better mattress, like the ones from Muse Sleep, which have cooling technology, memory foam and many other features that will help you sleep comfortably and stay comfortable. “A mattress is the most important part of your sleep, it supports your body, provides comfort and keeps your body cool while you’re asleep. Without a good mattress, it’s hard to maintain a good and restful sleep routine.”
In week 3, it’s important to commit to putting better routines in place, especially a wind-down routine. That means 30 minutes to 2 hours before it’s time to go to bed to start making sure we’re calming down and starting to relax. Some people meditate, some people have some calming tea and others take a hot shower. All these methods are a great way to remove the stress of the day, and make sleep easier to achieve. If you start implementing tactics that will help you sleep, it gives your body a way to signal that it’s now time to get ready for bed. It’s effective for children, so why wouldn’t it be effective for grown ups too?
In week 4, we have to commit to the new habits we have created. The reason a lot of habits don’t stick is a lack of commitment, so you have to actually make sleeping a high priority on our list. Build your evening around your sleep time, stop staying up too late and make sure you stick to a real routine, one that you can follow every single day. Once it becomes a habit, it becomes harder to break and you will have changed your health for the rest of your life. There is a reason why the most successful people in the world put sleep at the top of their lists, it’s essential to our health and how well we function. In 2020, put sleep at the top of your list and see how your life will change. Good luck and sleep tight!