We know, the typical New Years resolutions are get fitter, get healthier, get a promotion. But have you ever thought of getting more or better sleep?
Sleep is absolutely essential to maintaining your physical and mental health and wellbeing, we need it to hit those goals, be faster, lift more and be healthier but less and less of us are getting an adequate amount of sleep (a third of us get by on as little as four to five hours a night).
Firstly lets look at WHY we need more/better sleep….
- Poor sleep is linked to weight gain, whilst there are contributing factors such as motivation and hormones, sleep is one of the factors in there. If you’re trying to lose weight, quality sleep is crucial.
- Good sleep can improve concentration and productivity – the brain NEEDS sleep to function. Studies have found that poor sleep can have the same affect on the brain as alcohol abuse.
- Athletic and every day performance. Several studies on professional athletes and even elderly women have shown that adequate sleep can improve speed, grip strength, mobility and athletic focus.
- Healthy Heart – sleeping less than 7 hours a night is linked to an increased risk in heart disease and strokes, linking back to point 1 here also.
- Mental health and depression sufferers also show a poor sleeping pattern or poor sleep quality, I’m proving night time routine, sleeping conditions and quality could be a positive first step on a new journey.
Now lets look at how we can improve sleep duration and quality to give you the best shot at 2019.
- Routine, lets start with the simplest, cheapest option. Set a bed time and a wake time and stick to it.
- Down Time – we know its tough, but stop checking those e-mail before bed, stop lifting your phone before bed. Turn off the TV and start to use a notebook to offload any thoughts into before bed. Have a warm bath and some light reading, going to bed with a clear head and positive for a good sleep.
- Caffeine – You already know it’s not good for sleep, so cut it out after 2pm and see if that helps.
- The Bedroom – take a look at where you sleep, is there minimal light getting in? Add up some curtains or blinds to make the room darker. Is it cluttered? Studies recommend a clean and stress free environment for better quality of sleep.
- Sleep Tracking – Do you know for sure the quantity and quality of your sleep? Quite often when we feel sluggish through other factors, we blame sleep! But a tracker can help you see that you’re getting the right quantity of sleep and maybe just need more quality sleep, it can also be helpful in reassuring you that your are in fact improving your sleep.
Heres a few of our favourite sleep related products.
- This Works – Deep Sleep Pillow Spray – Get spraying those pillows and breathe in to help you fall asleep faster and wake up fresher.
- Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker – Professor Matthew Walker explores twenty years of cutting-edge research to solve the mystery of why sleep matters.
- Aromatherapy Associates De-Stress Bath & Shower Oil – Run that bath, add a few drops of bath oil and get ready for a stress free nights sleep.
So there you have it – Happy Sleeping and a Happy new year.