Everyday people are getting more affected by sleeping problems and are desperate to fall asleep quicker. Getting the eight hours beauty sleep is becoming more of a challenge in today’s world. Worry, stress and constant communication keeps us up way beyond our natural sleep hours. Recognizing the problem is the first step to getting back your sleep. Like every other problem there is a solution. Following 3 steps can help you fall asleep quicker at night.
Step 1: Establish a routine to fall asleep quicker
When we sit in a test our mind starts to work in a much focused mode because it knows that it is a test. Unfortunately our mind tries to identify when it is right time to sleep but we never send it proper signals, we are too busy using our computers or listening to up-beat music. Establish a routine to fall asleep quicker. Send your mind strong signals by establishing a night ritual.
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Establishing a night ritual to fall asleep quicker:
- Set a bed time and a wake up time for yourself: Your body and mind will soon tune into it and you will start getting tired around bed time.
- Dim down the lights an hour before bed time: Start to relax your mind by reducing amount of signals it needs to process.
- Stay away from screens if possible: The bright screen keeps your mind awake. If nothing else, turn down the brightness.
- Drink something warm half an hour before sleeping: It always helps to drink warm milk before sleeping. Nothing beats the warm fuzzy feeling of a warm cup of milk.
- Change into night clothes: It sounds weird but it really works, establish a habit of changing into your night clothes before sleeping. Your mind will set it as a signal to prepare for sleep, and not to mention you will be much more comfortable.
- Try not to sleep in the day: It’s okay if you have a set nap time but do not sleep whenever you feel sleepy during the day otherwise you will not be able to establish a proper routine.
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Step 2: Let go off Stress and fall asleep quicker
Stress is a part of everyday life and not knowing how to turn it off for sleep can keep us awake during the night and awfully tired during the day.
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Letting go of stress to fall asleep quicker:
- Assign “Worry time” during the day: Most of us worry a lot and trying to deny or not acknowledge those worries can be counterproductive. Give your mind an hour or half to just worry, accept it and don’t judge yourself on it. It may help to write the worries down in a journal to completely acknowledge your own list.
- Wind down: Relax your mind; bring its excited state to a more relaxed one. Maybe watch a funny video or movie, just so you do not keep thinking about tomorrow or past day’s event. Just let go and let your mind settle down to a happier and relaxed state allowing yourself to fall asleep quicker.
- Keep a notebook and a pen near you: Many times while you are tossing and turning in your bed you get a really good idea that gets you all excited. Instead of replaying it in your head write it down to focus on it in the morning.
- Visualize or Imagine: Now this one is tricky, it can work for many but it may also happen that while tapping into your imagination you end up developing a story in your head that keeps your mind occupied. Try imagining a still place that gives a calming effect rather than come up with an adventure story that keeps you awake.
- Listen to relaxing music: Emphasis here is on the relaxing part. Don’t listen to music that has lyrics or strong beats. There are actually many apps available for relaxing and night time music to help you fall asleep quicker.
- Counting sheep: Ah the old remedy, it still works for many. If you get annoyed by counting white sheep then try and make it more interesting by having dressed or differently colored sheep. It will give you a happy feeling and the counting will help with calming you down.
Step 3: Eating right at the right time to fall asleep quicker
You should not eat anything an hour before going to bed otherwise your body will be working hard and physically you will feel heavier. There can be numerous negative effects of eating before bed time.
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Eating right at the right time to fall asleep quicker:
- Have dinner and hour or two before sleep time: Have a cup of milk if you stomach feels too empty because you will not be able to sleep on an empty stomach either.
- Avoid caffeine: Caffeine has different effect on different people but for most drinking caffeine in any form will keep them awake at night. Avoid having any caffeine rich items such as coffee hours before sleep.
- Don’t eat too much: A solid advice in general, but sometimes when we eat a lot we feel really sleepy. Very rarely does that sleepiness actually lead to sleep with a stomach that full.
If you try all 3 steps and you still cannot fall asleep then get out of bed. Staying in bed and forcing yourself to sleep will only cause more stress to you and it may have the opposite effect. Get up and read or exhaust your body by exercising. Although exercise is not mentioned as part of the above steps but exercise can really help you sleep better at night. A full workout will exhaust and tire your body and sleeping will come naturally.
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Caution: If your problem persists for longer than six months than please refer to a doctor. Insomnia is a sleep disorder that has multiple causes such as depression, anxiety etc. Prolonged lack of sleep can be a huge problem if left untreated. See insomnia symptoms and causes for a prolonged sleep problem.
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