I have been chatting with a number of clients during the past week, and one common issue that many are experiencing is the difficulty in getting a good night’s sleep. This is due to a number of reasons, such as feeling worried about the news, concerns about a loved one or friend, financial worries and simply finding it difficult to switch off.
This is a common response, to recent events. and many are finding it hard to unwind. To help support you, I’ve listed below some tips on how to relax, unwind and promote a good night’s sleep.
Turn your bedroom into a restful sanctuary – remove all clutter to create a calm space. Staring at a pile of washing, paperwork or mess is not the ideal view when trying to rest.
Remove all technology from your bedroom. Your bedroom should be a relaxed space, so stimulating technology such as laptops, TVs, tablets and smartphones are a big no-no. Apply these rules to your children’s bedrooms too, and create a calm space for them to relax.
Control What You Hear/See
If watching the news before bedtime, or reading the various social media posts makes you worry and feel anxious, it can help if you reduce the amount of times you hear/see updates each day.
Set yourself a daily limit of how many times you watch or listen to the news, and try and avoid it before bedtime.
It may also help to ‘snooze’ social media pages, or friends you are connected with online, who share posts that worry you; don’t feel guilty about this – you have to protect your well-being.
Remember to also avoid technology at least two hours before bedtime. The blue light from our smartphones and tablets suppresses the production of melatonin (the chemical which induces sleep) and makes it harder for us to rest.
Avoiding caffeine several hours before your bedtime can help to promote a good night’s rest. Don’t forget this includes many fizzy drinks and chocolate too. As an alternative you could enjoy a herbal tea such as the Night Time Herbal tea.
Make a Note
Before you go upstairs to bed, write down any worries that you have or tasks that you need to complete the next day. The process of writing them down and releasing them from your mind, is a wonderful way to let go of any negative or busy thoughts.
It may also help to have the notebook and pen by your bed, so if you wake in the night you can jot down any worries or things you need to remember – leaving you able to relax, knowing they are there for the morning.
After you have written down your worries, turn to a clean page and write down three things which you feel thankful for.
These can be really simple, such as ‘my home is warm and safe’, or ‘thank you to the key workers for looking after us’.
Ending the day on a positive note, helps to create a relaxed mind, ready for rest.
Establish a Routine
Establishing a bedtime routine is always something I suggest to my clients, and this is particularly important now, as many of your normal routines will have changed.
Try and go to bed and wake at the same time each day – it will really make a positive difference.
Enjoy a Bath
Enjoying a relaxing bath before bedtime is a great way to unwind. Once you have written down your worries, to-do list for the next day and the three things you want to give thanks for, now is the ideal time to enjoy a soak.
Check the Temperature
Check the temperature of your bedroom, to make sure it is not too hot or cold. The ideal temperature for adults is between 15 to 19 degrees Celsius.
Establishing a good sleep routine may take a few days, so be kind to yourself, and relax as much as possible during this time.
If you are concerned about any aspect of your health always seek a professional medical opinion.