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10 Simple Ways To Get You Better Sleep Tonight

10 Simple Ways To Get You Better Sleep Tonight

Sleep is one of the most influential things in our lives. It dictates how we feel, how we act, and it even affects our health. We spend about a third of our lives asleep. So how do we make sure we’re getting better sleep?

You may also be interested in: 10 Ways to Have Quality Sleep That You Probably Don’t Know

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1. Make your bedroom feel calm and comfortable.

The color blue is recommended for bedroom walls. Avoid painting your walls bright, electric colors, as this is jarring and can stand out too much in the dark. Make sure your room is a comfortable temperature when including things like sleepwear and bedding. A too-hot or too-cold room can leave you tossing and turning in the night.

2. Get rid of the clutter.

Messy rooms can be distracting, which can lead to less restful sleep. Consider tucking away any loose items on your floor or furniture to make your space more sleep-friendly.

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3. Take naps.

Naps can really help get you through the day. Just make sure that your naps aren’t too long, lest you feel wide awake come bedtime. The recommended length of a nap is 15 to 20 minutes. This allows the brain to rest and recharge without tinkering with the brain’s sleep cycle.

4. Make sure you’re on a consistent sleep schedule.

Good sleeping habits are key to getting a better night’s rest. Setting an alarm can do wonders for getting on a consistent schedule. Wake up at the same time every morning, and try to go to bed at the same time every night. This way, you’ll eventually feel tired when it’s time to go to bed, and wide awake during the day.

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5. Soak up some sun.

Sunlight helps your body produce melatonin, which aids in sleeping soundly at night. It can also help wake you up in the morning. Artificial light found indoors can make you drowsy, so try to recharge during the day by getting some sun. This allows you to fight daytime drowsiness and will leave you sleepy only when it’s time for bed later in the day.

6. Consider cutting down on caffeine.

Caffeine may give you the pep you need to get your day going, but it can affect the brain for up to twelve hours after consumption. So if you’re constantly reaching for a cup of coffee throughout the day, it might be hurting your sleep cycle long after the buzz dies down.

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7. Boost your melatonin production at night.

Avoid bright lights close to bedtime. Turn off the television, and consider swapping the light bulbs in your bedroom for lower wattage bulbs. If you need to get up in the middle of the night, avoid turning on any overhead lights, as this can make it harder to go back to sleep. If safety is an issue, consider carrying a small light with you when moving around in the dark.

8. Exercise and eat right.

Exercise can help regulate your body’s sleep cycle. People with better health, generally, sleep more soundly and get better quality sleep than those with health problems. Consider cutting back on big meals before bed. It is good to avoid drinking alcohol before bed, too, as this can cause drowsiness the following day.

9. De-stress before bed.

Distance yourself from work or chores as it gets closer to bedtime. Too much anxiety over things like to-do lists can leave you restless throughout the night. Try to keep work and sleep as separate as possible. Your bedroom should feel like a calm, stress-free place, so leave work in another room.

10. Keep a nighttime routine.

Maintaining a routine before going to bed will help to signal your body that it is time to go to sleep. Consider reading or knitting, as these are calming, repetitive activities. You’ll be drifting off in no time.

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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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