It’s important to remember that well-being is a complete package, encompassing areas like sleep, stress management, nutrition, and exercise.
But how much do you value your sleep health? When it comes to daily priorities, sleep wellness falls well behind exercise, diet, work, and hobbies. This is despite the fact that 65 percent of American adults believe it contributes to next day effectiveness.
- Start a bedtime routine. About an hour before bedtime, start calming the body and the mind down. I like to drink some hot tea, read a chapter or two in my latest book (not on a screen), and do a body scan meditation. This routine will look different for everyone! - Coach Kristen
- Keep a consistent bedtime and wake time. Go to bed and wake at the same time each day, even on days off! Irregular sleep patterns alter your circadian rhythm and levels of melatonin, which signal your brain to sleep. - Coach Jennifer
- Cut off your caffeine consumption at least six hours before your usual bedtime. It takes five to six hours for your body to eliminate half of the caffeine you just had. It’s a stimulant that can make it harder to fall asleep, reducing the overall amount of sleep that you get. - Coach Stephanie
- If you do not fall asleep within 30 minutes, don't fight it. Get out of the bedroom (or your typical sleeping location) and go do something that will help you to relax until you feel sleepy enough to go back in the bed. This helps to associate the bedroom with sleep only, so your body can learn that being in the bed means "time to sleep." Over time, this helps your body fall asleep faster. - Coach Bizz
- If you are having a hard time falling asleep, try counting your breaths. Challenge yourself to count 100 consecutive breaths and let the rest of your thoughts go. I bet you will be deep asleep before you reach your 100th exhale. - Coach Eric
- If you wake up during the night because your mind is racing with thoughts and your "to- do" list, keep a notepad nearby and write them down so you can go back to sleep assured that come morning, you won't forget what you were thinking about. - Coach Sue
- Have a nighttime routine to get you ready for bed each night! Try doing something relaxing that you enjoy light reading, drinking a hot cup of tea, completing a relaxation technique, making your to-do list for the next day, doing some stretching or yoga before bed. Even if it’s just for a few minutes, this can help get your body and mind ready to fall asleep. - Coach Kerry
The most effective way to create positive health outcomes is through long-lasting behavior change, and this can only be achieved through small, gradual lifestyle changes. "Try out some of these tips to take your first step toward better sleep and better health."