#DoThisThing: Learn to Sleep Better

Sleep hygiene is self-care for cool kids.

Need to feel better? Synching up your sleep is the perfect place to start. Here are nine ways to get yourself on track. Start following this system and you will soon notice your mood lifting, your anxiety decreasing and your focus sharpening.

Ready? Let’s go.

  1. Get consistent

You need 8-10 hours of sleep each night. Set a bedtime alarm for nine hours before you need to wake for school. For example, If you set your alarm for 6 am, tucker in at 9 pm.

  1. Lose the caffeine

Caffeine impairs restful slumber. Have your last dose of caffeine six hours before bedtime. For example, If you tucker in at 9 pm, have your last Monster Beverage at 3 pm.

  1. Eat the right foods

Skip complex carbs, like bread and pasta before bed. Your body requires energy to break that stuff down and might mess with your zzz’s. Opt for a banana or milk, as both contain tryptophan, a sleep aid.

  1. Exercise every day

Thirty minutes of daily physical activity, especially outdoors, will help you to fall asleep faster and sleep more soundly.

  1. Commit to a ritual

Committing to a routine of nighttime habits can help you fall asleep. Great things to include: 15 minutes of reading, a nightly gratitude list, washing your face, brushing your teeth, talking with your family for a few or doing some deep muscle relaxation exercises before lights out.

  1. Ready your room

Keep your lighting dim in your bedroom at night and have a “Sleep ONLY” policy for your bedroom. Opt to do your homework and YouTube video watching in the family room and retire to your comfy, dark bedroom at sleeptime.

  1. Ditch the devices

Powering down your tech 60-90 minutes before bed and keeping all devices out of the bedroom for sleep time benefits sleep in a big way. It may take some getting used to, but you’ll feel better in the morning, promise.

  1. Relax it out

Breathe in for 3-4 counts through your nose, breathe out through your mouth. Tense each muscle group from the top of your head to the tips of your toes for 10 seconds each and release.

  1. Keep a log of your sleep hygiene

You’ll quickly see that the more boxes you check, the more restful you’ll sleep and the better you’ll feel. 

Download this week’s worksheet here!

Art by Janine Kuehn, worksheet by Jess Meoni.

 


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