Sleeping issues continue to daunt most of us from time-to-time.
Our demanding schedules ensure that our sleep is disturbed either in terms of quality or duration-wise. A sporadic incidence of bad sleep isn't that big an issue. However, if you feel that lack of sleep or poor quality-of-sleep is hampering your performance at work or your health, you need to read about the following better sleeping habits:
1. Develop Your Personal Sleep Routine
You don’t need to follow sleep timing-related advice that surrounds us in the form of tabloids and blogs. Just develop a pattern that is suitable to your lifestyle. It doesn’t make sense to follow a routine that inconveniences you and makes you “work” towards getting proper sleep. However, you need to follow some sort of routine. This means knowing when you should switch-off the lights and when you need to wake-up. This is best done by noticing at what time you tend to get a bit heavy-eyed at night. Keep your going-to-bed time around this period. Follow this with a wake-up timing that allows you an extra few minutes to laze in the bed. Ensure a wake-up time with the flexibility of 15 to 20 minutes. Even if you get less than the recommended eight or nine hours of sleep, it won’t matter much if your quality of sleep is good.
2. Eat Lighter & Early Dinner
Ensure that you have had your major meal or supper at least three to four hours before the sleep time. Eating too close to bedtime tends to keep away the sleep. Since the body is actively involved in metabolizing the food that you have consumed, its metabolic rate is up. This means that chances of falling asleep decrease. You might wonder that often after having a heavy meal you get a bit drowsy. However, that is more of a nap that is induced by the body trying to maximize its resources towards digesting the food and slowing down other systems. However, to get a longer and refreshing nighttime sleep, you should eat lighter and a bit early.
3. Exercising Helps
This might sound a bit strange to you but exercise and the quality of your sleep are interrelated. You need to understand that sleeping patterns are essentially a part of your internal body clock. This includes the body’s ability to rest and return to active performance. However, due to issues like stress, anxiety and poor dietary habits, this inherent body clock is compromised. In order to sustain the optimal performance of our bodily rhythm, you need to exercise regularly. This doesn’t mean pumping iron in the gym is compulsory. Any sort of activity where you can dedicate about 40 minutes, combining some stretching, running and jogging is sufficient.
4. Choose Evening/Night Foods with Precaution
Once the evening sets-in, try to reduce your intake of alcohol and caffeine. Even nicotine is known to disrupt the action of biochemicals in our body that induce sleep. There are some foods that help you in falling asleep with ease. For instance, milk and complex carbohydrates found in foods like brown rice contain a higher amount of Tryptophan. This compound is known to assist the sleeping cycle. Avoid foods that are high in sugar before bedtime. These tend to induce the sugar-rush that can disrupt your sleep cycle.
5. Keep Away From Nighttime Distractions
Your pre-sleep routine can include reading a book or watching a bit of TV but ensure that you don’t indulge in something so fascinating that it doesn’t let you switch-off your mind. Shun-out any kind of distracting light coming through the windows by drawing the curtains. Try to avoid watching typical genres on TV that can arouse your senses. This means keeping away from action-packed and thriller movies/serials. Switch-off the cell phone, laptops/tablets or any other gadget that might buzz you. (Health, MensXP.com)