Sleep is your best friend – but are you getting enough?
Studies suggest simply being “awake” for over 18hrs results in the same kind of reaction times you’d expect from someone over the drink-drive limit. Given that a lot of people reckon they get less than 6hrs, you could be spending a good proportion of your driving time (and thinking time!) effectively over the limit!
Safety aside, the knock on effects of lack of sleep on physical and mental performance in all areas is incredibly underrated. From general mood, immune health, digestion, weight loss and muscle building, sleep is truly the missing link for many people.
So, how do we get more?
Social media everywhere! Ok, we’re all addicts. But when you want to take your sleep seriously, you’ll need to cut down the late night browsing. Bright lights will keep your brain switched on, so when you do actually put your phone down for the night you’ll be so wide awake you grab it and start browsing again. Turn it off, along with all other technology 30-60 minutes before you want to sleep. Online self-verification can wait till you get sat at your desk at work tomorrow morning,
Notepad by the bed
Lying awake with 10,000 things running through your head? Time to ease the pressure on your brain after a long day. Keep and notepad and pen just by your bed. Million dollar business idea? Write it down. Suddenly remembered the actors name from the movie you were talking about with a friend? Write it down. Floating to-do list in your head? Before sleeping write down the ten things you need to do. Do 15, 20, 300, if you get it out on paper and relieve the worry that you’ll forget about it in the morning, you might just get a better night’s sleep
Bedroom settings – heating/light
It’s cold. Not many people like being cold. But don’t have the heating on full whack all night. It’ll cost you a fortune for one, but the body also likes to be at a slightly cooler temperature while getting to sleep (your core temperature actually raises a touch when you sleep). Turn the radiator down a notch or three. Shut your blinds or curtains properly – the technological light I was talking about? Same goes for the daylight that in most months will be beaming through your curtains or blinds if you haven’t drawn them properly.
Get yourself a routine
The body will appreciate the rhythm. If you’re a 9-5 worker this is the easiest one of them all. Have the same alarm clock time in the morning, and the same bedtime every night. You’ll work out the exact amount of hours you need for sleep and might be able to extend you evening that little bit longer for more social media/boxset time.
The god of all drugs. The one that gets us up in the morning. The one that gets us through an afternoon meeting or squat session that does not want to be squatted. BUT, it’s the devil when it comes to sleep. Knock any caffeine on the head when 2 o’clock strikes. The body needs time to get rid of it for when your head hits the pillow. I’m a coffee addict, so no preaching here. But rarely will you see my having any in the afternoon unless I’m writing a really boring helpful article like…. oh.
Try these tricks, implement some of them, drop us a message and let us know how you get on.
But not after 9pm, eh? We’ll be asleep.