We all have heard how we need at least 8 hours of sleep to fully recover and perform at our best, but although we try, our sleep schedule is always a mess! So if you are one of those who manage less than 7 hours of sleep per night, you might want to read this!
Increased risk of the following
Sleeping less than 7 hours a night increases risk of:
• Weight gain
• Heart attack
• Memory loss
• High blood pressure
HABITS TO ADAPT TO SLEEP BETTER
3 factors influencing your sleep:
2. Light levels
How do we improve these?
• Use blackout curtains (light)
• Use an air conditioner (temperature)
• Use a high-quality pillow + mattress (comfort)
These investments pay big dividends for your energy.
Keep it cool.
As mentioned, temperature plays a big factor in your sleep quality. Keep your thermostat set between 60 to 67 degrees Fahrenheit (15.6 to 19.4 degrees Celsius).
Get sunlight for 5-15 minutes after waking up
The sun sets an internal countdown, telling your body it’s the start of the day. This helps regulate your sleep cycle, making it easier to fall asleep at night.
Caffeine can kill your sleep quality + quantity.
This is because it blocks adenosine receptors…
Adenosine = The sleep-promoting hormone.
It takes around 10 hours for caffeine to leave your system. Go to bed at 10pm? Don’t use caffeine past 12pm. 4 cups of coffee is no replacement for 8 hours of sleep.
Avoid late-night exercise
Before sleep, your body prepares by:
• Slowing heart rate
• Slowing brain waves
• Lowering body temperature
Exercise leads to:
• Higher heart rate
• Higher levels of arousal
• Higher body temperature
Avoid exercise 1-3 hours before bed.
Avoid blue light before bed
Blue light comes from:
• Artificial lights
This makes our brain think it’s day time and suppresses the sleep hormone, melatonin.
Avoid blue light 1 hour before bed.
But if you have to use tech, wear blue-blocking glasses.
Relax before bed
When you engage in activities that turn on the analytical part of your brain, you create ‘open loops’.
Your brain hates unresolved problems, so it’ll keep you up awake trying to find solutions.
Avoid this by scheduling a “no work” time at night.
Journal before bed
Stimulating activities create open loops.
Journaling closes them.
This is because of 2 reasons:
1) Writing allows you to actively work through problems and come up with solutions
2) Your brain understands your thoughts are stored somewhere safely so it doesn’t have to keep it at the front of your mind
As a result, your mind is at ease.
Research has shown the effectiveness of meditation.
Just 10 minutes can:
• Reduce anxiety
• Reduce heart rate
• Reduce blood pressure
These all aid in your ability to fall and stay asleep.
Sleep at consistent times
Your body has an internal clock it follows. If you go to bed late one night and early the next, you’ll throw off your circadian rhythm.
So create a schedule you go to bed and wake up at.
You’ll fall asleep faster and wake up refreshed.
If you sleep less than 7 hours, follow these 10 tips tonight:
1. Optimize your room
2. Keep it cool
3. Get sunlight
4. Don’t consume caffeine late
5. Avoid late-night exercise
6. Avoid blue light
7. Relax before bed
10. Sleep consistently