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10 Things To Remember If You Want To Fall Asleep Faster

10 Things To Remember If You Want To Fall Asleep Faster

Stress from your day job and an endless to-do list at home doesn’t just melt away when you slip into bed. It’s hard to turn off your brain and let everything go when you close your eyes. Here are some things to remember when you want to fall asleep faster, naturally.

1. Turn off the TV.

And not just the TV. Put down your cell phone and shut down your computer at least an hour before bedtime. Your body starts getting sleepy as it gets dark outside. This means you should also turn off those bright overhead lights. Use small, dimmer lamps or handheld book lights later at night. Having lots of lights on and staring into the glare of a screen contradicts what your body is naturally trying to do as darkness falls.

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2. Relax your body.

You’re not supposed to exercise before bed because it gets your body riled up. Instead, work out in the mornings to wake yourself up. Simple yoga moves, however, can stretch your muscles just enough to relax. Once you’re in bed, you can start relaxing by stretching your toes, then your calves, then your thighs, and so on. Simple stretches warm up your muscles just enough to calm you down and put you to sleep.

3. Adjust the temperatures.

Take a hot shower before bed, or cuddle up under a blanket on the couch. Feeling warm will make you feel sleepier. There’s nothing better than finding that cold spot on your pillow in the middle of the night‒imagine if your whole bed felt like that! Keep your bedroom cooler, so when you’re ready for bed you get to slide into fresh, cool sheets.

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4. Unwind with a book.

Reading before bed will help you feel sleepy, and the book doesn’t even have to be boring! Get a new book from the library, or pick an old favorite, and cuddle up in bed to read for awhile. No matter how interesting the book is (as long as it isn’t a scary book!), you’ll feel your eyelids getting heavy and you’ll realize you just read the same paragraph five times in a row‒and don’t even remember what it says!

5. Write in a journal.

The book doesn’t have to be a novel! Find a blank book and start writing down your thoughts. If you get out all your stresses and worries onto paper, your mind is free to think of other things‒or nothing at all! You’ve got your to-do list written down, you analyzed a troubling conversation with a friend, you wrote your worries about tomorrow’s presentation‒now you don’t have to think about them anymore. The words you wrote will still be there in the morning; let your mind be free to drift off to dreamland!

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6. Indulge in a warm drink.

You’ve read about characters drinking warm milk to help them fall asleep. That’s not fiction! It really works. If you can’t fall asleep, sip some warm milk with honey, or a variety of teas. Just make sure there’s no caffeine in the tea, or else your plan will backfire!

7. Turn down the volume.

Eliminate excess noise in your home and bedroom. Don’t leave the TV on all night. Even if you think music helps you fall asleep, it more than likely activates your brain more than you realize. Silence is the best way to encourage sleep. If total silence makes you uneasy, try a white noise machine.

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8. Meditate.

Lay down, clear your mind, and think of nothing. Your body is relaxed, and your mind is on its way. Forget the stresses of your job and all those petty problems nagging you. Think of nothing. Think of something calming and clean and empty. Eventually your mind will be clear and will naturally put you to sleep because it has nothing to think about.

9. Try aromatherapy.

Instead of turning to supplements, though there are natural sleep aids out there, why don’t you try aromatherapy? Find a natural oil scent you like and dab a few drops on your pillow. Lavender is a scent that has been proven to help induce sleep.

10. Get out of bed.

It seems strange, but if you can’t fall asleep after a period of time, get out of bed! Your body is getting tired (no pun intended) of lying down, which frustrates you and makes it harder for you to fall asleep. Instead of tossing and turning for an hour, get up and go to another room. Sit on the couch and read a book. Try to meditate in another room. Just make sure you’re not getting up and turning on bright lights or looking at a phone screen.

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Last Updated on November 20, 2020

Kickstart Your Morning Workout With These 10 Simple Habits

Kickstart Your Morning Workout With These 10 Simple Habits

Benjamin Franklin said it like this: “Early to bed, early to rise, will make a man healthy, wealthy, and wise.” He knew from his own experiences and watching others that the ones who got up early were healthier and more successful. That’s why a morning workout can be so important.

One 2017 study found that:[1]

“after controlling for such factors as age, sex, smoking habits, and others…night owls, were found to have a 10 percent greater risk of dying from any cause compared to morning types.”

This is a great reason to tap into some morning motivation and get your morning workout done.

Circadian Rhythm for morning workout

    As you can see in the above graph, your blood pressure begins to rise between 6 and 7 in the morning[2]. That means this is a great time to get your body moving and your heart pumping, even if it’s just for 20 minutes of exercise in the morning. 

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    Here are some tips on how to find the motivation for a morning workout.

    1. Remember Your Why

    It starts with remembering why you want to get up for a morning workout. If you don’t set a goal and establish your reasons for accomplishing a health and fitness goal, then you definitely won’t get up early.

    Getting up early isn’t easy. If it were, everyone would do it, right? Your goal for your health and fitness must be so strong, and the WHY behind it must be so powerful, that nothing will stop you from accomplishing that goal.

    2. Go to Bed Early

    If you want to get up early for a morning workout, it’s going to be important to get to bed earlier. Falling asleep at midnight and trying to get up at six just won’t work in your favor.

    This will likely be very difficult for a few days while you adjust your sleeping habits. However, as you get into an exercise routine in the morning, this will naturally make it easier to fall asleep earlier and faster at night.

    3. Make a Commitment

    I sometimes tell my Facebook community of my plans to work out, and we all keep each other motivated by posting our runs, our workouts, etc. This is a way to develop accountability. By publicly announcing your intentions, you increase your chances of actually carrying out your plans.

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    Another way to do this is to find an accountability partner who has similar goals for morning workouts. You can check in with each other to make sure you’re sticking to your plans. If that doesn’t work, hire a personal trainer for a few weeks to get you started.  

    You can learn how to find a good accountability partner here.

    4. Find a Friend

    If you can find a friend that is motivated like you are, and you can hold each other accountable daily to working out, then you will accomplish your fitness goals. Many people prefer working out with friends to working out alone. Whether it’s a chat while hitting the treadmill at the gym, or having someone to spot you while weightlifting, working out with friends is sometimes just more enjoyable.

    Texting each other the night before with a simple statement is best. Don’t ask: “Are we still working out in the morning?” With this kind of question, if they were thinking about not working out, you just gave them an opt out.

    Make a statement instead: “Can’t wait to see you in the morning!” This implies that they will be there, and they will feel more obligated to show up.

    5. Treat Yourself

    We all have to treat ourselves every now and then. After a morning workout, plan to treat yourself with a colorful, healthy breakfast or a delicious morning smoothie. This will help you look forward to something and push through to the end of your workout.

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    You can learn more on rewards and punishments here.

    6. Change your Mindset

    Many people throw away the idea of a morning workout by simply saying, “I’m not a morning person.”  Instead of using this excuse, decide to try to become a morning person by shifting your mindset.

    When you look into the benefits of waking up early and getting some exercise in before your day starts, you’ll feel more positive about your life overall.

    7. Plan Your Day

    You know you’re going to be busy. Try time blocking to plan all the things you need to do on a given day, and make sure you add in your morning workout[3]. If you have a plan laid out, you’ll be more likely to follow it and get done everything on your list done.

    Time blocking

      8. Reflect on How You’ll Feel After

      Starting a morning workout is hard, but visualizing how you’ll feel after can help you find motivation. Think about the extra energy you’ll have and how proud you’ll feel knowing that you were already so productive. No matter what you do the rest of the day, at least you squeezed in your exercise!

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      For me, I live in an area where there are a lot of runners. When I am heading home in the evening or sitting out on the patio at one of my favorite restaurants, and I see the runners go by, it makes me feel so accomplished that I got mine in that morning and I can enjoy the evening.

      9. Lay out Your Workout Clothes

      Setting out your workout clothes the night before makes it impossible for you to start to run late because you couldn’t find something to wear. Tap into the determination you have before bed in order to convince your less-than-motivated morning self that you need to get up and get your morning workout in. When you wake up and see your outfit laid out next to you, it’ll push you to get up and get moving.

      10.  Set Multiple Alarms

      Many people miss their morning workout simply because they hit the snooze button so many times. In order to make this more difficult for yourself, set a series of alarms. That way, if you keep hitting snooze, you’ll have three or four alarms going off every ten minutes, which will be annoying enough to get you out of bed.

      Also, put one alarm at least a few feet from your bed so that you’re forced to get up to turn it off.

      Final Thoughts

      About three years ago I went from being the person that says I will never be an early riser to a person that loves to get the day started as soon as possible. Without the distractions that begin to come around 8 or 9 in the morning, you’ll find that you’re more productive and more likely to squeeze in that morning workout.

      Take some of the actions above and find the best morning workout routine to start your day and feel good.

      More Tips on Morning Exercises

      Featured photo credit: Tomasz Woźniak via unsplash.com

      Reference

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