It's the time of year when many people are considering what areas of their life could benefit from change. The top three most common New Year’s resolutions are to eat healthier, get more exercise, and save more money. Number four on the list is self-care, specifically getting more sleep. Because one in three adults in the United States does not get enough sleep, prioritizing sleep is a very worthy resolution. While the new year is a good time to think about changes to make, you can start sleeping better at any time you're ready to reset.
Here are a few ways you can start sleeping better this year.
1. Refocus on your health.
Regular exercise, sleep and a healthy diet impact mood and overall health year-round. Especially as you get back to a normal schedule after the holidays, eating plenty of nutritious fruits and vegetables will help you adjust to consuming less holiday treats. Make sure you remember to exercise at least three times per week and maintain a consistent sleep schedule as you refocus on your health.
2. Reset your circadian rhythm.
Shorter, cooler days mean more time spent indoors and less exposure to natural sunlight. As a result, you may feel fatigued due to a lower level of vitamin D. Winter weather and more time indoors can also disrupt your circadian rhythm, which helps you feel awake or sleepy. You can remedy this by getting plenty of sun on your face in the morning and shutting down electronics and bright lights earlier in the evening. Try opening the curtains as soon as you wake up and going for a morning walk. After sunset, put down your cell phone, turn off the television and dim the lights in your home to help your body slow down for sleep.
3. Create a sleep sanctuary.
You probably realize that sleep impacts every area of your life, but have you ever wondered whether you’re getting the best quality sleep available to you? Planning and intentionally setting up an ideal sanctuary for sleeping will help ensure a higher quality of sleep. In your sleep sanctuary, you’ll want to include high-quality bedding, the right pillow for your sleep style, a comfortable mattress and a dark environment to induce restfulness. Because the ideal room temperature for rest is between 60 and 70 degrees, depending on personal preference, clothing, and bedding, you’ll want to make sure your sleep sanctuary in well ventilated and cool.
If better sleep is one of your New Year’s resolutions, you can follow these steps to get there.