You may crave coffee, pine for your phone, but you NEED #sleep!

As the season progresses, it’s highly likely that you’ll feel very tired as work around you starts to pile up and comes at you all at once. In order to get everything done, you’ll likely put in more hours which means less time for shut-eye.

While this isn’t meant to deter you from getting work done–nor is it meant to encourage you to shirk your responsibilities–it is very wise to keep a very routine sleep schedule to prevent any detriment in performance and brain function. In other words, the less we sleep, the less likely we are to function.

Insufficient sleep leads to exhaustion, lack of focus, memory and cognitive deficiency, lack of motivation and weight gain (our body releases fat when asleep, and when it doesn’t get enough sleep our body stores fat). We wouldn’t run our cars for hours on end because we know the battery would die, so why run our bodies into the ground?

Sleep is essential to good health.</strong>

Just as we have our own daily routine by which we abide, our body has its own routine by which it abides to a fault. One of these routines is the Circadian Rhythm, a routine which happens to dictate when you stay awake or fall asleep. Because this routine can easily be thrown off with the wrong habits, here are a few habits that can help you get more than enough sleep to carry out your day-to-day routine:

Don’t Play with Electronics Before Bed– Electronic devices emit blue light, which has a higher amount of energy than natural sunlight. As a result, playing with electronics at night can mislead your brain into thinking it’s still daytime. While there are items and apps that can block blue light, the best course of action would be to stop using electronics 2 hours before bed.

Go Outside More– It is recommended that you expose yourself to an abundance of bright light during the day, even on slightly gray days. Consider taking a walk or balance running errands outside of the home with being indoors. Getting a good amount of sunlight is especially helpful for people with sleep issues such as insomnia.

Set an Exercise Routine– Exercise, one of the most demanding and stimulatory activities, is bound to leave you exhausted after at least half an hour. In fact, according to Healthline, exercise has been proven to “enhance all aspects of sleep and has been used to reduce symptoms of insomnia.”

Take a Hot Bath– This tip will be especially effective if you have had a long, exhausting day outside of the house or a good exercise workout. A bath will help you relax your muscles and wash away the stress. Be sure to adjust the temperature to your liking; you don’t want to burn your skin with this tip.

Avoid Caffeine– Caffeine is a stimulant that can be found in coffee, sodas, and chocolate. Caffeine has been proven to be very disruptive when it comes to one’s sleep schedule. It is highly recommended to avoid caffeine as much as possible but definitely stop consuming caffeine at least 6 hours prior to going to bed; especially if you have issues sleeping. For those with insomnia, avoiding caffeine altogether is wise.

Avoid Long Naps As Best As You Can– It is healthier for the average person to avoid naps as they can keep you from sleeping when it’s really necessary. An alternative to consider would be to take short power naps during the day. But it’s very easy to lose track of time when you sleep, so be sure to have your alarm handy.

Avoid your Bedroom During the Day– As tempting as it is to stay in bed and lay in your comfortable sheets, that actually has more detriment than benefits. The more you get accustomed to your bed during the day, the harder it will be to feel comfortable in it at night, when it matters. Two alternatives to your bed would be a comfortable couch or a reclining chair. However, please be careful not to lay down on the couch for too long, chances are you’ll end up with a backache or leg cramps.

picture of woman meditatingZen Yourself Out Before Bed– Routines such as yoga and meditation can be very effective at tiring you out if performed before bed. According to Healthline, routines meant to clear the mind are proven to help people sleep better and can even help with symptoms of insomnia. Other pre-sleep routines can include counting backwards from 300, reading, or journaling (writing down your to-do list for the next day, worries or stresses that are bothering you or any thoughts that persist in your mind).

Sleep Somewhere Comfortable– The quality of your bed–mattress, pillow, and even blankets–can go a long way when you’re aiming for a good night’s sleep. But not everyone’s comfort level is the same, so be sure to base all of your choices on your own preferences.

If all else fails…
Spiritual Spectra can help!

Over the last 8 years, Spiritual Spectra has specialized in stress and anxiety reduction through Reiki and Meditation which addresses the causes of stress and anxiety and thereby releases the emotional and physical symptoms associated with it. The Baltimore Sun interviewed Jennifer Garcia, Founder of Spiritual Spectra, for a February 1, 2019 article about the importance of letting go of stress. In addition, Spiritual Spectra offers Spiritual Consultations that provide guidance on life, romance, career and/or business and with clarity comes calm. Our services are provided in our office in Columbia but for groups of 3 or more, we can go onsite at your home or business.

Source Cited: 17 Proven Tips to Sleep Better at Night by Healthline

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