I recently sketched this pastel in the wee hours of one morning. A Self portrait, (complete with those ridiculous eyelashes), of how I start every day. Note the time, friends.
That’s me. Ms. Rise-and-F**ken Shine. Each year, I seem to sleep less and less. It’s easy to get anxious about it–especially when people warn you about the dangers of not enough rest, but what if my body just won’t cooperate?
The National Sleep Foundation’s: “When You Can’t Sleep: The ABCs of ZZZs”, is a worthy primer, so I’ve listed it below with some of my personal results:
Set a schedule:
Go to bed at a set time each night and get up at the same time each morning. Disrupting this schedule may lead to insomnia. “Sleeping in” on weekends also makes it harder to wake up early on Monday morning because it re-sets your sleep cycles for a later awakening.
My set time is 10pm, but what happens if you pass out at 8pm “sleeping in” the sofa?
Try to exercise 20 to 30 minutes a day. Daily exercise often helps people sleep, although a workout soon before bedtime may interfere with sleep. For maximum benefit, try to get your exercise about 5 to 6 hours before going to bed.
Tried this and NO EFFECT on sleep whatsoever. Daily exercise only increases my appetite.
Avoid caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol:
Avoid drinks that contain caffeine, which acts as a stimulant and keeps people awake. Sources of caffeine include coffee, chocolate, soft drinks, non-herbal teas, diet drugs, and some pain relievers. Smokers tend to sleep very lightly and often wake up in the early morning due to nicotine withdrawal. Alcohol robs people of deep sleep and REM sleep and keeps them in the lighter stages of sleep.
I’m going to pretend that I didn’t read this one, #denial!
Relax before bed:
A warm bath, reading, or another relaxing routine can make it easier to fall sleep. You can train yourself to associate certain restful activities with sleep and make them part of your bedtime ritual.
I can fall asleep…anywhere…that includes a bathtub, super dangerous.
Sleep until sunlight:
If possible, wake up with the sun, or use very bright lights in the morning. Sunlight helps the body’s internal biological clock reset itself each day. Sleep experts recommend exposure to an hour of morning sunlight for people having problems falling asleep.
I wake up before the sun. Maybe this isn’t my list?
Don’t lie in bed awake:
If you can’t get to sleep, don’t just lie in bed. Do something else, like reading, watching television, or listening to music, until you feel tired. The anxiety of being unable to fall asleep can actually contribute to insomnia.
Anxiety! That’s the magic word! I don’t lie in bed worrying about not sleeping…I worry about the odd mole with the hair coming out of it, my 21 year old going to Vegas, or if that organic lettuce I ate had e coli on it.
Control your room temperature:
Maintain a comfortable temperature in the bedroom. Extreme temperatures may disrupt sleep or prevent you from falling asleep.
The colder, the better. Thank you, hormones.
The last pointer recommends to see a doctor if your sleeping problem continues. My husband’s solution to all of this is just to have more sex.
Well if that were true, it would be on the list, right?
“It’s a typo,” he says.