Secrets to a Good Night’s Rest

Sleep is a human necessity that can affect the quality of our lives. Interestingly though, it can be he first thing we sacrifice when life get busy and demanding. Sometimes we think of sleep as a necessary evil rather than as a restorative process that will help us function at the top of our game.

People who are well-rested report that they feel better, are more productive and often describe themselves as more content and have better relationships. When we are not well- rested we often experience more stress, have difficulty concentrating and are short-tempered with others.

    Here are some suggestions for improving the quality of sleep:

  • Make sleep a priority. Make a conscious decision to devote an appropriate number of hours to rest so that you can feel good. Most people require about 7 – 8 hours per night.
  • Establish a routine for bedtime. All parents are aware of the need for routine for their children at bedtime and how this promotes good sleep. Adults often don’t consider that this also is important for them. Establishing a routine will assist adults in the same way that it helps children.
  • Go to bed and get up at the same time every day. This is actually part of the bedtime routine but it does help to train your body to expect to sleep on a regular schedule.
  • Avoid alcohol, food, nicotine and caffeine for about 2 – 3 hours before bedtime. Remember that caffeine can be found in soft drinks, chocolate, coffee, tea and hidden in many other substances and can make falling asleep more difficult.
  • Keep your bedroom cool, quiet and dark. Most people sleep best under these conditions.
  • No electronics in the bedroom. The bedroom should be for sleep and sex only. Leave your computer, cell phone and television in the other room.
  • Focus on resting your body not falling asleep. Trying to sleep will actually prevent you from falling asleep easily. Instead just focus on relaxing your body and your mind and let your body do the rest. Also don’t look at the clock. This will just create more agitation and decrease the likelihood of falling asleep because it usually emphasizes how tired we expect to be the next day if we can’t get to sleep.

Sleep is not over-rated! Getting a good nights rest will help us to function at our best. If your have continual issues with sleep then consider consulting your family doctor to see if you would benefit from medical intervention.