Sleep is something that
Difficulty falling (and staying) asleep is a common problem. As an important source of fuel for the body, sleep is a valuable commodity. If you have been lying in bed for a while and can’t sleep, get up. Don’t stay in bed, worrying about not having enough energy for tomorrow; do something to encourage a more rapid appearance by Mr. Sandman.
1. Go for a soak
Relax in the bathtub to soothe both the body and mind. Try adding some sleep inducing scents into the tub, like lavender oil. Caution: Don’t take a shower. This can actually awaken your body, so opt for a warm bath instead. Add some candles and calm music for heightened relaxation. A second hint: Sprinkle a few drops of lavender oil on your pillow to pacify you in bed, too.
2. This old wives tale works
Have a glass of warm milk. You thought this was just an old wives’ tale, but it actually works! Warm milk has a tranquilizing effect on the body that can calm you down and prepare you for sleep. The same amino acid (
3. Find an activity
Do something relaxing out of the bed. Try reading, doing yoga or watching something a little boring on television at low volume (think the Learning or Home Shopping Channels). Don’t watch anything that will wind you back up. Looking for other ideas? Sew, scrapbook or write a letter. Whatever activity you choose should be easy, nothing that will key your nervous system back up. Once your eyes get droopy again, hit the sack.
One of the worst things that you can do is to sit in bed and think about what you didn’t get done today, and all of the work you have tomorrow. Worrying about it won't get any of it done, so let it leave your mind. If it helps, make a to-do list so that you don’t forget the next day. But leave it at that; once it is on the paper, forget about it. Another trick is to turn the clocks away from your bed so you cannot count the passing minutes. If you focus on the fact that you are not sleeping, you’ll make the problem worse.
5. Add some noise
Wait a second. . .
6. Listen to your body
Could it be your body is too tense
And in the future…
Exercise! Consistent fitness and nutrition is directly linked to improved sleep. Of course, if you are lying in bed restless, it might be a little late. But, start tomorrow and you’ll sleep better in the nights to come. If (and when) you do exercise, make sure it’s not right before bedtime, which can interfere with your body’s ability to relax and nod off.
Make going to bed a routine. Around the same time every night, even on weekends, start your routine. This could mean taking a bath and some light reading. It could simply mean changing into your pajamas and brushing your teeth.