Going to bed at a given time is a very important part of any productive routine. However, the condition to do this consistently is that we’re able to fall asleep when we want. Otherwise, going to bed will be constantly delayed and it will turn into a stressful task. In order to avoid such complications and to get the best out of our rest, today I’m suggesting 5 useful ideas to fall asleep more easily.
1 Use your energies! The first piece of advice is about your daily activities. In order to feel tired in the evening, you’ll have to make sure that you’re using most of your energies during the day. If you feel that you still have some energies after your ordinary duties (school/work), try to integrate some physical activity in your routine. Physical exercise will have a very good impact on your lifestyle, and you’ll be able to get to the evening “tired enough” to sleep.
2 Identify your ritual. Everyone of us has a specific succession of actions that “transition” from the daily activities to the activity of sleeping. We all have common repetitive actions that lead us to go to bed (relax, wash our faces, set an alarm and so on). Try to identify your “ritual” and divide it in 4-5 key actions. Every evening, try to perform the ritual in the same order with the same pace. You’ll progressively get used to it at a deeper level, and your body will start to relax as soon as you start your “sleeping ritual”.
3 Review your plans for tomorrow. In order to stop your worries and your stress from interfering with your rest, you’ll need to keep your tasks under control. Every evening, before going to bed, write down a short activity plan for the following day. Then, leave the note on your desk. You’ll have time to review it in the morning if you need. Now that you consciously took care of the plan, it’s time to make the conscious decision to leave it there. Your sleeping time is sacred and exclusively yours. After taking proper care of them, leave your worries at the door.
4 Read. Reading in bed is the perfect activity to do before sleeping. This, for two main reasons: first of all, your body will already be in a relaxed position, and secondly your attention span will send you precise signals for when it’s time to sleep. Every night consider at least a 15-minute read to do before sleeping, but don’t be afraid to read over half an hour if you still feel awake. Remember that it’s better to use most of your energies.
5 Don’t force, be patient. We all know the situation: we’ve been in bed for an hour, and we’re still not able to fall sleep. The strategy I suggest you to solve this situation is a bit counterintuitive. If you can’t fall asleep, simply wake up/stand up again. Move to the couch and start reading again, until you feel it’s time to go to bed. You can also decide to stay in bed and read. This strategy will take some more time (maybe another 30 minutes), but it will be a lot more pleasant and relaxing than lying in bed for hours without being able to sleep. Good night!