Sleep It Off
As a kid, my mom had my siblings and I in bed by 8 p.m. on school nights, and as I grew older, 11 p.m. Then I moved away for college where I quickly forgot what sleep even was. Now that I'm out in the adult world where everything that happens during the day is very dependent on my energy and punctuality, I've set a sleeping schedule of my own. I know what you're thinking, "is this girl really going to give me a bedtime??"
A lot of our health depends on the quality of our rest every night, and although I'm not going to set a bedtime, I thought I'd share some tips I've come across that have contributed to my excess energy throughout the day and positive health.
Invest in your bedding! Believe it or not, you may toss or turn in bed a billion times before falling asleep, simply because you don't have very comfortable bedding. For my birthday a couple years ago, I treated myself to a very fluffy duvet cover from IKEA and it's been the best decision I've ever made. I now have 2.
Set your phone to charge, AWAY from arm's reach. I know that sometimes we might need our phone for emergencies, but the light that comes up every time we have a notification can be a little distracting keeping you away from falling asleep. I set my alarm, put everything else on silent, and flip my phone upside down. This also helps me literally GET OUT OF BED in the mornings, since I have to turn off my alarm.
Dimmer lights in your bedroom - I once read an article at a chiropractor's office about how bright bedrooms can trick your body into thinking it has more energy than it does. This might sound crazy, but it made sense to me okay! I have a lot of natural light during the day, which wakes me up bright and early, but while it's night time, I have dimmer lights in my bedroom. It sets your body up for a "resting mood" and will wear you out sooner than brightly lit rooms.
Wash your bedding once a week! I feel like this is a universal understanding. Who doesn't like to fall asleep quickly in freshly washed covers?
Finally, get yourself on a schedule! I wake up every single morning at 6:45 Mon - Fri and on the weekends I wake up no later than 8. I've noticed that my lifestyle has been more productive and goal oriented once I set my routine to wake up. I wake up in such a great mood and I'm always rested up with plenty of time to accomplish things throughout the day. I have no issue falling asleep at night when I wake up that early because my body is just so tired by the time 10p.m. rolls around. (Yes, I usually am in bed no later than 11 p.m.)
I'm no sleep expert, but if the girl that would fall asleep at 4 a.m. and drag her body to class the next morning can now rule the day with these sleep habit changes, then I'm sure it'll help someone else out there as well!