5 TIPS FOR BETTER SLEEP
It was a Tuesday morning and I was all set to manage the business meetings for the day. The route to work is usually uneventful, just a few turns and an overhead bridge and then I get to the office. I was driving and listening to one of my favorite Nigerian “gbedu” when suddenly I realized I had dozed off at the wheel and was just a few inches away from hitting the side road barrier. What startled me was the blaring horn of the driver of the car behind me. Poor him! He must have foreseen I would hit the sidebars and trip off the overhead bridge. He saved my life!
Being a busy working mum of a pre-schooler, I hadn’t slept well in the past few days because my pre-schooler had a terrible fever. My mom instincts kicked in every hour as I stood up to check on him several times through the night. I was fatigued and I knew it.
As busy professionals and entrepreneurs, one thing many of us, including myself, cheat on a lot is SLEEP. Do you cheat sleep in some way, sleeping less in an attempt to achieve more? We all know it backfires.
I listened to an intriguing TED talk the other day by Jeff Iliff and I learned that the brain is probably the only part of the body that rejuvenates itself when we sleep. So, if you’re not sleeping well, how will your brain excrete its “poo?” That was two years ago and now I’m an advocate of good sleep.
So, before you have the same experience, here are my top 5 tips to better sleep:
- Invest in quality beddings: It’s amazing how much attention we pay to buy quality electronics, wristwatches, and smartphones but then just pick up bedspreads and pillows from the store down the road. The quality of your mattress, beddings, pillows, ambiance in the room, all contribute to the quality of sleep that you get. You can avoid lots of backache, early morning headaches, and swollen eyes if you paid a little more attention.
- Silence the distractions: Keep the TV and if you can, mobile phones, out of your room. I once had a roommate whose notifications disturbed my sleep all through the night. Before we had smartphones, we had a life. There’s nothing you’re missing out on, so turn your phone off (except where it is necessary needed) when you’re getting ready to sleep or keep it in silent mode. I assure you that Instagram post can wait until tomorrow morning. Take necessary precautions that aid sleep.
- Schedule it in: Sleep about the same time every night and your body will adjust to that rhythm. Set your alarm clock if you have to. A structured bedtime and wake up time helps to ease into sleep better and wake up feeling refreshed.
Watch your intake before bedtime: No caffeine drinks before bedtime. Opt for some warm/hot milk or tea instead. Try chamomile with honey. It’s very soothing. Drinking too much water before bedtime may make you wake up through the night because of a full bladder so empty your bladder before you sleep. It helps.
5. Learn to cast your cares on God: Forgive yourself for any mistakes you made during the day. Forgive anyone who wronged you as well. Keep a light heart and positive emotions before you sleep. Then, pray and sleep like a baby. Some people journal before they sleep. Others listen to soothing music. Whatever is noble, whatever is pure, whatever is loving, think on these things. God’s got you!
Question: How much sleep do you get? What sleeping habits work for you? Please leave a comment.