I had terrible insomnia all through college. I remember feeling so stuck - the later I fell asleep the later I needed to sleep in, the less productive I was & the more likely I wouldn’t be able to sleep the next night.
It was a nightmarish cycle. If you can relate to any of that, I promise it DOES NOT have to be your reality.
If you seriously want to amp your health and have days full of energy & clarity, there are solutions. The thing is you may have to nut up and stop doing things that actively contribute to sh*tty sleep. Here are some practices that work.
HITTIN’ THAT SWEET, SWEET 7-9 HOURS
1. Pimp your bedroom
No clutter. NO TV. Peaceful, calm, DARK & cold are key. You want this to be a room you walk into & immediately feel relaxed. Sleep & sexy time only.
2. Be VICIOUS about your bedtime routine
Pick a start time & stick to it. Include some practices you enjoy that are NON-stimulating such as laying out clothes, journaling, light stretching, & epsom salt bath. Teach yourself how to read.
3. To eat or not to eat
Some people respond really well to a protein+fat snack before bed as it can lower cortisol levels. But maybe restricting food to 2 hours before bed will work for you. Try ‘em both.
4. Dim lights
As soon as the sun goes down, dimming lights will help your brain realize it’s sleepytime. Pro tip: salt lamps are chill af.
Phone out of the bedroom is a gamechanger. Shutting the TV off 2 hours before bed is also a no-brainer that we tend to fight - but works like crazy.
6. Brain dump
Great for anxiety/busyness compulsion. Keep a journal by your nightstand and dump all tasks, worries, concerns, thoughts. Conclude by listing 3 wins from your day.
7. Get up
Changing sleep takes TIME. Be patient & kind to yourself. If you really can’t sleep, it’s totally ok to get up. Just don’t GIVE up & turn on the tv. Hit a light stretch, brew some tea, grab a snack.
8. AM Routine
Getting sunshine on your skin/eyelids FIRST thing & moving are ridiculously effective at improving your next night.
NOTE ABOUT SUPPLEMENTATION
Yes, there are supplements that may help. No, I won’t throw out recommendations without knowing you and your struggles - especially when I know the previously mentioned practices work like crazy. If your sleep is really in the weeds, and NONE of the above strategies work, then I urge you to get help from a pro, rather than throwing back pills that can end up down-regulating your own production (lookin’ at you melatonin).