For many of us, getting a good night’s sleep can be a challenge. Especially with the seemingly nonstop year of COVID and disrupted sleep patterns due to working from home, poor eating habits, and interrupted workout schedules. A lack of proper sleep can impact our hormones, weight, along with our physical and mental outputs.
Sleep is critical to all functions of our life, including productivity, immunity, overall health, and of course, our happiness. We compiled a list of some of the BEST sleep practices you can immediately incorporate into your routine and lifestyle thus, enabling you to be and do your best!
Exercise! Regularly too…
Yes, we hear it all the time, but regular exercise does wonders for preparing your mind and body for a good sleep!
Consistent walking, jogging, aerobics, or light weight training raises your heart rate and burns calories – even hours after your routines. In fact, daily exercise can reduce the amount of time to fall asleep by 50% or more!
Just 20 minutes of moving your body also cuts sleeplessness by 30%, anxiety by 15%, and INCREASE productive sleep by 18%. Avoid excessive exercise activities in the late afternoon or evening as they tend to raise epinephrine and adrenaline, which can impede your sleep.
Sleep on a Comfortable Mattress and Pillow!
One way to find out which bedding options are best for you is to try several out! Try a hotel, an Airbnb, or your friend's bed! :)
A new and properly matched mattress can do this > reduce back pain by 57%, shoulder pain by 60%, and back and neck stiffness by 59%. That comes down to increasing your overall sleep quality by 60%!
Sometimes, paying just $20 more can make a world of comfortable difference and that's definitely something to sleep on! Right now, there are so many new options in the marketplace, and even Shark Tank backed startups are focused on bedding options. It's worth the time to check them out.
And it's more than just the bedding, it's the lighting, air temperature, and air quality, the ambient noise, AND your sleeping partner. If anyone snores like a bear, it's going to decrease the quality of a good night's sleep. Make sure your bedroom is maxed out to the Zzzzzzs for the best optimal sleep. Also check out "How to Choose a Mattress" for ideas.
Meditation. Shower. Bath. Relax.
Prepping for a good .. no, GREAT night's sleep is also important.
Spending just 9 mins in a warm bath or shower can greatly relax your body by warming and calming muscles and nerves. A shower also elicits negative ions - like a waterfall or thunderstorm. These elements create a calming effect on the human body. This is also a great time to lower the lights, lock out the world, and meditate on good thoughts, positive energies, and align those chakras!
Warm baths also increase blood flow to all areas of your body, reduces pain and effects of arthritis, and soothes joint pain.
A warm shower or bath with low lighting actually mimics pre-sleep stages in the brain, accelerating the time your mind and body need to fall into the wonderful sleep zone! And of course, a bath or shower means you have to be naked! Our primal brain relaxes when we are in that state and naturally relaxes for an in depth session of quality rest!
Supplements and Sleep Aids
We always encourage natural sleep alternatives for the best quality sleep. There are many natural sources for helping our bodies move towards a great night's sleep. One we suggest is our very own Hivessence Sleep Support supplement. Our specially formulated capsules contain Chamomile Leaf Extract, L-theanine, Magnesium, Lavender Extract, Valerian Root Extract, and 3 mgs of Melatonin - all natural and safe ingredients found in plants.
Taking one to two tablets just 30-mins before bedtime can greatly enhance a wonderful, quality sleep schedule when combined with the other methods discussed above! The best part of our formula is that you awake refreshed, without the "brain fog" or "post coma" feelings from typical pharmaceutical prescriptions.
Reduce Alcohol and Caffeine
Many of us use wine or other alcohol beverages to induce calmness and relaxation before bedtime. One thing to be aware of is that these can cause sleep apnea, and disrupted sleep patterns - especially REM - our deep sleep cycle. Caffeine elevates blood pressure and brain activity which is in direct conflict with cycles needed to enter a proper sleep mode. Both of these options can also interrupt our natural circadian rhythms and internal clocks we naturally rely on for staying on course for our 24-hour cycles of sleep and daily activities.
All of these suggestions can work together to bring you into a habit of developing the highest quality sleep patterns you've ever experienced. As mentioned earlier, sleep is one of the most critical components to our overall health. It's also where we spend a large portion of our time - the average person spends 26 years asleep in their lifetime! Maximizing the benefits of our sleep means during our waking hours that we can be the best versions of ourselves: fully awake, vibrate, ready to tackle anything, and have the feeling of youthful energy and happiness. Because, isn't that what it's all about? :-)