DIY - Re-Boot Your Sleep

Get your body ready for a good night’s sleep by not overstimulating it. Bedtime is 'very important to your health'.  You need good sleep and you should treat your bedtime with proper respect.

A quick list:

  • No caffeine after dinner

The half-life of caffeine in the body is roughly 5-10 hours

  • No Nicotine

A common stimulant; you should quit or make your last cigarette of the day well before bed.

  • No Alcohol

Depresses everything in your system including your metabolism. Alcoholics report having no dreams because alcohol disrupts REM sleep, a critical sleep phase for both brain and body health.

  • No Screens 

TV, computer, cell phones – even bright led lighting etc...

  • Change your body temperature

Induce a temperature swing that will make you sleepy - Your body drops in temperature as you drift off into sleep. You can trick your body by simulating this temperature shift. In the colder months take a hot shower or bath late in the day, your body temperature will rise and then fall again as you cool off from the shower making you sleepy in the process - In warmer weather, but you can substitute the hot shower with a cold one – the temperature swing that will make you sleepy.

  • Minimize external distractions

Especially important while you’re easing yourself into a new sleep routine. Have a cat that jumps on the bed at 3AM? Toss them out of the bedroom before bedtime. Neighbour starts up his diesel truck at 4AM to go to work? Wear ear plugs. Spouse gets up and turns on the lights to get dressed before you? Sleep with a sleep mask on – anything to protest your ‘sleep’ time.

  • No napping.

Right now we’re focused on rebooting your sleep cycle. No napping. You need to go to bed at the end of the day when you are tired, not at a later time because you snuck in a nap.

  • Purge your bedroom.

No computers, no television, no balancing your checkbook in bed, no reading over those reports, no anything but sleeping. Your bedroom should be a place your body associates with nothing else but sleep. (and of course sex)

  • Don’t torture yourself.

You did all the right tings, but it’s 11PM and you’re still tossing and turning. Go ahead and get out of bed and do something that will relax you. Don’t do anything that will stimulate your brain into thinking it is time to wake up - go sit in a comfortable chair and read a book for a little while. Do something low-stress and relatively boring for 20-30 minutes and then go lay down again. You don’t want to get in the habit of thinking of bedtime as unpleasant and stressful.


Long Term Recovery

  • Analyze your sleep needs.

Do you know how much sleep you actually need? Do you wake up when the alarm goes off or do you wake up before it? There is only one good way to find out - Creep your bedtime forward by 15 minutes every few days until you start waking up on your own in the morning. When you start waking up before your alarm clock consistently—for a minimum of one week, weekends included—you’ve found your optimum sleep window.

  • Obey the Routine.

Find a routine that works for your schedule and stick to it. Your adult body appreciates a routine bedtime just as much when you were a kid.

  • Anticipate Lack of Sleep.

If you know you’re going to be up late, take a power nap in the afternoon. If you’re coming off a late night bender make sure to adjust your bedtime the day after to get you into bed sooner. Short term sleep deprivation can be quickly remedied with adequate rest. Don’t let a wild weekend throw off your sleep schedule ...


Rested-Photo by Oleksandr Pidvalnyi from Pexels-320007.jpeg
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