If you’re like most people, you spend your day rushing from point A to point B, and making a few strategic stops in between. You also might have a little trouble turning your day off, and putting it behind you, so you can properly wind down, and train your brain for sleep after a long day of all this running around. This might be especially true for you during the holiday season when there’s seems to be so much to do, but not enough hours to do them.
These tips will help you wind down at the end of your day, so you can get the good night’s sleep you require to restore your body, maintain your health, and keep you in tip-top shape for productive days ahead.
1. Start a Gratitude Journal
Actively practicing gratitude, the art of being grateful, offers many benefits to those who participate. Chief among those benefits is the ability to sleep better, according to Psychology Today, that reports spending as little as 15 minutes before bedtime jotting down grateful thoughts can help you sleep not only better, but longer as well.
Other benefits of gratitude include:
- Aiding relationship building
- Improving physical health
- Boosting psychological health, and feelings of well-being
- Enhancing empathy while reducing aggression
- Strengthening mental fortitude
- Repairing self-esteem and feelings of worth
In other words, it does a lot more than paving the way for a better night’s sleep.
Whether you practice deep breathing techniques for a few minutes, or dive right into major meditation to help you relax and wind down at the end of the day, the results are difficult to ignore. There are even specific meditation practices designed to enhance sleep by helping you wind down. If you’re not sure where to begin, consider guided sleep meditation to help you get started or use an app, like the Calm app to help.
Stretching exercises and bedtime yoga can be instrumental tools for triggering your brain to settle down for rest at the end of a long, busy, and often stressful day. The Bustle has all the skinny, and even offers helpful video instructions for a variety of stretching exercises to help you unwind, so you can get the better night’s sleep you’re dreaming of. If all else fails, try these yoga moves for mindful actions to help you sleep and to help cure insomnia when it strikes.
Opting for a few moments of complete silence at the end of your day can offer a wide range of benefits according to Psych Central, especially in the following areas:
- Lowering blood pressure
- Decreasing stress and cortisol (the stress hormone) levels
- Improved hormone regulation
- Environmental awareness
- Overcoming insomnia
If getting a good night’s sleep is a priority for you, consider prioritizing silence as you prepare for bed.
5. Turn off all Tech
Technology is improving lives every day in so many ways. One area where it is often more of a hindrance than a help, however, remains the area of sleep. People sleep with tech nearby, and often find their sleep disrupted by pings, notifications, emails, and more. This means your body doesn’t have the opportunity it requires to repair itself overnight because your brain is constantly turned on and tuned in for the next alert or message.
6. Soak in a Warm Bath
For some people, there is nothing more relaxing than a nice long soak in a warm bath. It is a powerful combination that includes scents, warmth, and a nice floating sensation that feels like it’s washing the cares and worries of the day away.
When it comes to helping you unwind for sleep, though, there is real science behind why it is so effective to take a 20 or 30-minute bath before going to bed. The steep rise in temperature your body experiences during your bath rapidly cools down in the period after you get out of the tub, placing your body in a greatly relaxed state, perfect for going to sleep. The sharper the drop in temperature, the better the quality of the sleep.
7. Drink Calming Tea
Organic sleep blend teas can be instrumental tools for helping you get the sleep you need at night. Look for relaxing blends that contain no caffeine and include ingredients like Chamomile, Lavender, Valerian Root, Peppermint, and/or Rooibos. These teas help you feel relaxed, reduce restlessness, and promote sleep, making them excellent choices for your evening drink of choice.
If you’re the kind of person who can’t read a chapter, and then go to bed, it might be best to skip this step. However, if you’re able to read a few minutes, it’s an excellent choice. Goalcast reports that spending as few as six minutes reading before going to sleep will improve your sleep quality.
9. Try Aromatherapy
Relaxing fragrances offer a low-key opportunity to enhance your efforts to relax and fall asleep at night. Essential oils are great for bringing healthy fragrances into your home, without introducing chemical fragrances into your home that could prove unhealthy in the long-term.
Which fragrances are best? We recommend the following fragrances to promote sleep and relaxation:
- Ylang Ylang
Essential oils can also be pleasant additions to your homemade green cleaning products, too.
10. Listen to Soothing Sounds
A tried and true tool for promoting sleep is sound. Relaxing sounds, specifically. You might need to work a little to find the sounds that provide the right effect for you, but some sounds that are highly effective at promoting sleep include:
- White noise
- Light rain sounds
- Storm sounds (with thunder)
- Soothing music
- Waves crashing
Once you find the sounds that work best for you, you should experience a noticeable change in how long it takes you to fall asleep, and how often you wake in the middle of the night.
These tips can be instrumental in helping you relax and unwind, so you can get the great night’s sleep your body deserves. Try them today, and see what a difference they make in your sleep quality and quantity. If all else fails, consider switching mattresses to a natural latex mattress from the PlushBeds family that promotes excellent comfort and support, so you can have your best night’s sleep yet.
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