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3 Actionable Tips to Get Better Sleep Every Night

3 Actionable Tips to Get Better Sleep Every Night

You definitely don’t want to stay lazy and stressed all day long. Do you?

A healthy adult requires 7-9 hours of daily sleep on average, and most of us don’t even make it to 6 hours. Some have distractions that don’t let them sleep while some others just aren’t able to sleep despite staying in bed for long.

We all keep hearing about how a healthy lifestyle consists of getting enough sleep but how many of us actually try to get these tips to work?

Unfortunately, most of us don’t!

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I am not sure about you, but I have never been able to adapt to healthy sleeping habits until I came across these simple tips.

Being deprived of a good night’s sleep doesn’t only keep you lazy and stressed all day long but it also has adverse effects on your health as well. But before you diagnose yourself with insomnia, here are some simple tips to help you improve your sleep patterns:

1. Say NO To Stimulants Before Bed Time

This is one of the most commonly made mistakes by most people with sleep disorders, including me. Intake of nicotine, caffeine or alcohol before bed time makes sure you can’t get a good night’s sleep.

Let’s talk about caffeine, which is one of the most popular drug in the world. We consume caffeine on a daily basis in things like coffee, tea, chocolate, etc. Caffeine is a stimulant that most of us use to stay alert at work all day long. But if you are going to have a cup of tea or coffee right before jumping to bed, you are just getting one step closer to a poor night’s sleep. You will stay up longer in bed, staring at the ceiling or even playing games on your phone.

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Similarly, alcohol and nicotine are also stimulants and excessive routine use of nicotine can cause insomnia and other sleep disorders.

Stop caffeine or nicotine intake at least 6-8 hours before your bed time. This ensures that any previous intake is broken down and you are all set to get a good night’s sleep.

2. Fix Your Sleeping Environment

Do you wake up with a sore and achy body?

It’s probably because your sleeping environment is not set, be it mattress or your pillow. If you have neck pain or back pain after you wake up, you need a better pillow. Identify your sleeping position and then select a suitable pillow. If you are a stomach sleeper, get a pillow that is ideal for stomach sleepers.

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If you are a back or side sleeper, an organic buckwheat pillow can come to the rescue. A buckwheat pillow is stuffed with buckwheat hulls that adjust themselves according to the position of your neck, giving you relief from neck and back pain.

If you experience hot flashes or night sweats during sleep, try a hydraluxe pillow or any gel-based pillow that stays cool. You can also use a water-filled pillow to keep your head cool all night long.

3. Being Consistent

Being consistent is vital, be it your business or sleep. Most of us don’t understand the importance of consistency and hence get deprived of good sleep.

Make a schedule and follow it religiously. If you tend to forget things, use your smartphone and schedule it. Set an alarm at 30 minutes before your sleeping time, so you can give yourself grace time to finish things off before going to bed.

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Make sure you cancel any source of light before going to bed. Leaving lights turned on is another distraction and keeps you waking up in short intervals. If you are scared of dark, you can leave a dim light bulb turned on in a corner of your room.

I am not saying that you are going to see an 180-degrees shift in your sleep patterns, but I am sure you will be able to sleep better and longer by following these simple tips.

Featured photo credit: Healthable via healthable.org

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Kyra Taylor

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Last Updated on January 14, 2019

7 Ways To Make Exercise Fun For Everyone

7 Ways To Make Exercise Fun For Everyone

From Atkins to Paleo to eating gluten-free despite not being one of the rare few people afflicted with celiac disease, fad diets are everywhere. It drives me crazy because I believe these diets do more harm than good. Your body is made up of a variety of vitamins, nutrients, and minerals, and losing weight healthily isn’t possible when you fill your body with unnecessary synthetic plastics, sugars, and powders. There’s no easy button in life.

What you need to do is exercise, which isn’t very appealing to many people. Workouts take work, so there’s already a stigma involved in going to the gym. Starting a healthy workout regimen becomes easier when you make it fun. If you want to live long and prosper, get off the couch and try these methods to turn your workout into a playout.

1. Take the scenic route.

Walking is an easy way to transition to a healthy lifestyle, and it’s free. Not only do you burn calories (check out this calculator for how many calories you burn based on your weight), but you see the world in a different way. Hiking in nature is great if you have access to it, but don’t let living in an urban area deter you from walking.

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Whenever I’m creatively stuck I get my head straight by walking a couple of miles. It’s also how I discover new paths, meet new people, and stumble upon hole-in-the-wall spots I never would have found otherwise. You could drive past the same place every day and never appreciate the beauty, nor even notice it’s there.

2. Distract yourself.

No matter what exercise routine you choose, use the time to meditate. You may wonder how marathon runners are able to put so many miles on their bodies. It’s because the pain from running that you avoid is something they’ve learned to harness to enter a transcendental state. If you’re aware of the benefits of meditation and exercise but don’t have time to do both, you can combine them, killing two birds with one healthy stone.

3. Listen to music or podcasts.

There are few experiences in life more pleasurable than turning up the music and drowning out the world around you. With so many podcasts and music apps available on your smartphone, you can easily find entertainment options perfectly suited to your personal tastes. Never worry what people may think of you when working out;instead, crank up the volume and get lost in your own world. You’ll be in shape before you know it.

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4. Bring a friend.

Some people can’t go anywhere alone. While I highly recommend dining out and seeing a movie in a theater alone, having company while exercising is very helpful. It allows you to pace yourself with someone else, and gives you a coach to motivate and push harder than you may have on your own.

Many exercises are safer when done with a friend, and some sports can only be played with another person. Involving others in your goals can mean the difference between success and failure. Just remember to continue exercising if the other person flakes, or they’ll be in control of your health.

5. Accessorize.

There are accessories that can make exercise easier, and sometimes buying a new toy can add some much-needed fun to your routine. With apps like RunKeeper and Nike+, your smartphone is capable of tracking your vitals and progress. Wrist weights can add a new dimension to your workout, and, if you exercise at night, a headlamp can help you see what’s in front of you so you don’t trip.

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For urban runners and power-walkers, one of the biggest obstacles is other people. It’s difficult to get in your meditative zone and enjoy your music when you constantly have to dodge people. To resolve this vexing issue, Runbell, a startup in Tokyo, has developed the runner’s version of the bicycle bell. With this lightweight brass bell warning people you’re approaching from behind, you’re free to maintain your transcendental state while continuing your workout. Head to their Kickstarter campaign to pledge your support.

6. Compete.

A little healthy competition can motivate you to push yourself further in your workout regimen. There are apps like Zombies, Run! which turns your run into a video game, and MyFitnessPal which allows you to connect with others in the exercise community. Whether you’re directly competing with a friend, an online community, or against your previous self, setting goals is the key to reaching them. Running with no destination can feel like an impossible task, and it’s easy to get distracted.

7. Relax.

The best part about exercising is how much you enjoy the downtime. If you think laying on your couch all day is enjoyable, it has nothing on that hour you spend as a couch potato after a rigorous workout. Jay-Z said it best, “in order to experience joy, you need pain.” The harder you push yourself while exercising, the better you’ll feel when you’re relaxing.

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With that said, don’t relax too much, or it loses the effect. It’s okay to indulge every so often. Treat yourself to some junk food you’re craving, imbibe a drink here and there, and spend a day vegging out on your couch. Staying healthy doesn’t have to be torture. Just turn down when you can and dedicate some time to better the health of your body. You only get one.

Featured photo credit: tpsdave via pixabay.com

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