When it comes to our well-being, we tend to take everything into consideration but the quality of our sleep. We take expensive vacations, we increasingly choose organic food products instead of supermarket ones and we search the web for good psychotherapists.
While all these are indeed factors that contribute to the improvement of our general physical and mental health, very few people remember just how important sleep can be as well. But what do you do when you feel your sleep isn’t fulfilling and relaxing enough? Below you’ll find a list of five changes you can bring to your nightly routine that will positively impact the quality of your sleep:
1. Allow Yourself to Wind Down
Make it a point to disconnect from all devices and stress factors, such as thinking about work tasks, for example, for at least two hours before bed. Your body needs a smooth transition between the more upbeat daily rhythm of life and the increased relaxation it’s meant to feel during sleep time. Make sure to not check your mobile phone before bed and to gradually allow your mind to pull back from what it is that kept it awake during the day.
2. Make Your Bed So It Becomes Inviting
Too often we go to bed and wake up automatically, without setting an intention for ourselves to be more conscious about these important parts of the day. So every night before you go to bed, take extra time to make your bed – smooth over the sheets, fluff up your pillow and feel the texture with your hand. Allow all your senses to be delighted and you’ll become more at peace and present. Having said this, when you have silk pillowcases and sheets, the sensory experience becomes even more fulfilling both before and during sleep – silk will simply make you feel like you’re sleeping in the clouds.
3. Do Relaxation Exercises or Meditation
Most people can’t fall asleep or have troubles sleeping well due to their extremely busy minds. This is why it’s recommended that you try meditating before bed each night, for at least 10-15 minutes. Allow your mind to declutter until you get to a point of thoughtlessness.
Focus on your breathing until you pass the point of shallow breathing and get to a point of longer, deeper breaths. It also helps if you consciously try to let go of anything that’s been bothering you, allowing for forgiveness and gratitude to step in instead.
4. Optimize Your Bedroom Environment
Every night right before you go to sleep, take a couple of minutes to look around your bedroom. Register how it looks and how it feels. If it feels cluttered and overwhelming to you, it probably is and may not be conducive to healthy, quality sleep. In this case, it’s recommended that you optimize your sleeping environment a little bit.
Take out anything that’s extra, arrange the items that are unorderly and make sure you create a feeling of spaciousness. Your sleep will instantly be improved and you’ll feel more relaxed and clear-headed in the long run.
While exercising before bed is not recommended, it is indicated that you do a bit of stretching before bed. You will only need ample and light moves that will unwind you and bring your awareness back into your body. Through stretching all negative emotion that’s been accumulated in the body during the day can now finally be released.
Having said this, stretching is very low-impact for the body, it soothes the muscles and clears any energetic blockages that have found their way into your system. You have plenty of stretching exercises to choose from, simply pick the one that best suits your needs and physical condition.
These are some of the nightly routine changes you can implement before bed. There are so many more things you can do to improve the quality of your sleep, however by just following the steps above, you will gradually notice how everything changes for the better in your waking life.