Getting a great night’s sleep starts with a healthy body and a relaxed mind. But being able to fall asleep easily doesn’t just have to do with what’s going on inside your body. A lot of it depends on the kind of sleep environment you set up for yourself in the hours before you go to bed. Have you ever thought about the way your immediate surroundings invite relaxation or stimulation? If not, it’s time you started. Here are a few easy ways to turn your bedroom into a sleep-friendly haven in no time at all.
Getting to Sleep
Even if you’re exhausted by the end of the day, there are certain things that can trick your body into feeling stressed out even when there’s nothing to worry about. A messy room is one of the most common culprits. When you go to bed with clutter all around, not only are you not optimizing your bedroom space but you’re leaving reminders of unfinished business all over the floor. It’s not particularly conducive to getting into the calm, relaxed pre-sleep state you’re craving. Take a few minutes during the day to clean up your room, banish clutter, and most importantly, make your bed. It will make bedtime seem that much more inviting. Even if you take the time in the morning to do simple tasks like:
- Fold laundry
- Sort clothes on the floor and throw dirty items in the hamper
- Organize your bedside table
- Make your bed with care
The result will make your bedroom seem more like a sleep sanctuary than a stressful, messy environment.
We know you’re busy. But when you think about it, how helpful is it to try and answer a text or email alert at 3 am? Attending to work matters when you’re not at your sharpest is never a great idea, especially when the problem can easily wait until the morning. Making sure your phone is on silent (and, if you’re being extra diligent, turned over to minimize notification lights) will help you stay asleep longer, and it won’t even interfere with your morning alarm.
We all know how damaging the bright blue light of electronics can be on our nervous systems, especially in the hours before bed. In addition to limiting screen time before going to sleep, try making your bedroom into a calm zone by:
- Spraying calming essential oils like lavender
- Opening the windows or turning down the thermostat for a slight chill
- Listening to a meditation podcast
Even if you spend fifteen minutes before bed doing low-energy stretches or a bit of meditation, you’ll be preparing your body for a restful night’s sleep.
Making Your Bed Your Happy Place
These days, the work you do is likely to get done as much in the office as in the home, the coffee shop, and the bedroom. While you can’t help being a diligent worker and always making sure to check emails even after the workday is done, it’s a good idea to take steps to take work out of the bedroom. If you can’t commit to that, try limiting work to a desk or upright area in your bedroom. As long as your bed remains a work-free environment, you’ll have an easier time associating it with sleep. Setting up a desk outside your bedroom and keeping most of your electronics designated to that space will go a long way in terms of helping you tune out the hyper-stimulating world of work, news, and media.