I’ve had trouble with sleep for most of my life. From sleepwalking as a kid to night terrors that have stayed with me since my teens (not the best guest for a slumber party!) getting to REM is a struggle that I’m more than familiar with. With all of the research that has gone into sleep (thanks Ariana), we’ve learned how important sleep is to every part of our health. From cognitive function, to mood, to even weight loss, sleep is the holy grail.
Over the years with the help from experts I’ve come up with a few things that really help me get to sleep and most importantly stay asleep and I wanted to share them with you!
Avoid your phone: Social media seems the perfect thing to cuddle up in bed with but studies are starting to show that it just gives you a ton of anxiety, so shut that mo-fo off and pick up a good book.
A sleep and wake-up light: it’s all about circadian rhythms and this light helps you fall asleep and wake up with a simulated light like the sun rise and set. It also wakes you up with natural sounds to start your day off with a chill vibe. This is such a nice wakeup especially during Canadian winters.
Black out blinds: so we spoke about natural light but if you’re anything like me, I need darkness to fall asleep without distractions from the outside world. Blackout blinds were a game changer for me.
Melatonin, magnesium and some other good stuff: I always shied away from melatonin because it gives Jimmy crazy nightmares and intensifies his Restless Leg Syndrome but my naturopath suggested Somno Pro which contains a combination of L-Theanine, 5-HTP and a lower dosage of Melatonin and I find it works really well to help get that deep sleep -and no shaky legs for Jimmy! I also have collagen and magnesium at night which help to chill you out. For a combination that you can drink (and tastes delicious) Vital Proteins Moon Milk is awesome.
Have a hot bath: this can be harder for me (I’m a shower girl) but on nights of peak anxiety when I can’t chill, getting into a hot bath with a few candles can do the trick. I’m not the biggest fan of the bath but it really can get you into the calm zone.
Meditation: a big reason for not getting sleep can often be the inability to shut your brain off. Over time, meditation can help with basically everything, but most importantly when it comes to sleep, it can help train your brain to stop running from problem to problem. Headspace and Calm are both great apps to get you started.
Next up, I’m trying a weighted blanket. Stay tuned!