Sleep was on my mind for most of the day today. Why, you ask? Oh, well it just so happens that the dudes living a floor above me have formed a band that practices on Sunday nights at midnight! There is nothing quite like starting out a Monday morning to the tune of horrible guitar playing and drum set banging.
Sleep is important for everyone, but I think getting a true good night of sleep is an especially difficult thing for many post grads that are transitioning from college schedules to the 9-5 grind. In college, I took naps (I miss them so), stayed up late writing papers, and stayed out late most weekend nights. These days, I’m exhausted, or already asleep, by about 10:30pm. Weekends included. Here are a few tips I’ve picked up throughout the year and half since I began working full time.
Poor diet has been proven to be one of the major triggers for sleepless nights. The worst part about this is that little sleep tricks our bodies into wanting more horrible food, which we then have no energy to burn off. This cycle can get out of control very quickly. So try and spin the cycle in reverse! Eat more fruits and vegetables, and try to stay away from heavily processed and fast foods. Healthy foods = better sleep = more energy.
Creating a relaxing space is another way to bring on the zZz’s. Try out dark window shades or sleeping with a soft eye mask to create complete darkness. If you live in a city like me, the constant hum of traffic can either be soothing or completely irritating. I sometimes use a free Ipad app called Nature Sound that plays relaxing sounds to mask the sound of cars rushing by. It may be completely cheesy to listen to “Mountain Ambiance” noises, but it puts me right to sleep so I’ll take it!
Another way I try to make the most of my precious sleeping hours is easing into them. Taking baths has become a nighttime luxury for me. I go all out with fancy bath salts and exfoliation scrubs. I also will YouTube meditation videos, or even just take an hour to read on the couch with my feet up and a cup of tea. Chamomile and Passion Fruit are two of my favorite teas to drink before bed.
What are your tips for an excellent night’s sleep? Here’s hoping mine isn’t disrupted by the resident rock band tonight..