We bet you have a specific plan for each and every hour when you’re awake. Working to help your future self with that healthy nutrition, career breakthroughs, regular visits to the gym, or developing that healthy and nurturing relationship. But did you know we humans also need to be mindful of our sleep habits - and that those wholesome sleep habits start in the morning?
By now, you’ve probably heard and read about how detrimental sleep is to our overall physical and mental health (aspects of our life like memory, immunity, learning, mood, weight regulation, energy levels, and many, many more). So here’s a step-by-step plan to achieve your goal of proper, excellent quality night rest, aka sleep. It all starts at around…
6am. Set up a constant wakey-wakey time, yes, on weekends, too. Your body clock will kick in and chances are, you’ll need less caffeine to keep you alert throughout the day. Also, try not to over-abuse that snooze button to avoid grogginess. Those extra 5 minutes of sleep can (and should) transform into, say, a 5-minute meditation.
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7am. This is your first waking hour of your day, and sleep experts recommend a combo of drinking 12 to 16 ounces of water, soaking up some sun by the window, and engaging yourself in a 20 to 60-minute workout. Light instructs your brain to boost alertness, and exercise helps reduce inflammation and improves general health.
8am. Try not to skip breakfast!
9am, 10am, 11am. What about your morning coffee? Well, don’t skip breakfast, like we said, but try to hold off your caffeine intake for the first 90 minutes of your new day. Let your body wake up naturally and keep drinking water throughout the day. And if you didn’t get the chance to spend some minutes in the natural morning sunlight, or if it’s a gray day, there are some effective light therapy devices that could help you with your daily light fix.
12pm, 1pm. Lunch and short outside break time! Best if you have your lunch outside and then have a walk, however short.
2pm. Again, time to look away from your daily coffee (or green tea, or soda, or energy drink) break. Caffeine does affect sleep quality.
3pm. If you have the opportunity to have a quick nap, take it, but keep it down to 20 to 30 minutes. This will help you energize but will not disrupt your inner sleep clock.
4pm. Don’t forget to take your daily dose of supplements. To aid your sleep quality, doctors recommend omega-3s, D3 and magnesium, and throw in 0.5 to 1.5mg of melatonin.
5pm. When you’re home, it’s home time. Don’t blur the line between work and personal time. If it’s realistic, leave all emails and work notifications for tomorrow.
6pm. Dinner time! Keep it light, and the key is to have your meal at least 2 hours before you go to bed.
7pm. Again, try to resist the urge to delve into work matters.
8pm. Sleep specialists strongly recommend to put your electronic devices away, at least an hour before you go to bed.
9pm. Develop and follow your daily before-I-go-to-bed ritual. Take a bath, do some cosmetic procedures, read a book, meditate. In fact, reading until you fall asleep is the optimal variant since it takes your mind off the stressful things and helps you transition smoothly into the land of ZZZs. Another tip is to turn down the temperature a little bit.
10pm. It’s important that you get used to waking up at the same time every day, and it’s as important to fall asleep at the same time every night. That’s it! You’ve made it through the day, and the next one will be bright and productive for you. Sleep tight!
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The BetterMe Team wants you and those close to you to live a healthy, happy life! Your health is a valuable thing; look after your body and your mind so that you can live your life to the fullest – Remember you only get one!
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