Monday, April 28, 2014

HowTo Fall Asleep And Wake Up Effectively


We've all been there. Dreary, dark mornings, feeling as if our sheets are locking us down under them with no escape. That faint sound of the alarm goes on, then off, and back on again. All of a sudden, your eyes shoot open to reveal the time of departure glowing maliciously on the clock. Then the frantic brush, fluff and breakfast scarfing begins. My record time? 7 minutes. Mind you, that means a highly questionable outfit choice.

For me, spring is a time to turn over a new leaf and get myself on track. Exams are in the past and winter jackets can finally be tucked away. Here are some tips I'm trying to implement in my own schedule, to ensure that my summer months are productive as can be.

Exercise early
Getting a workout in before noon will keep your body awake when it should be, and tired for bed. Exercising late in the day definitely isn't bad, but it could result in a more hyped up evening, delaying sleepy time.  

Shut off early
I've been told by countless efficient people that it's crucial to limit screen time and completely shut down at least 30 minutes before lights out. I know this is such a tired request, but try to read a book. weather its for school or pleasure, locking those eyes onto some paper and text will surely make falling asleep a breeze. 


Take a warm bath before bed
I am a total bath person. I really enjoy going to bed with my skin feeling moisturized, clean and warm. A 5-10 minute soak is ideal, to eliminate excessive stripping of the skin's natural oils. 

Try aromatherapy and massage
Recently I discovered the amazing qualities of essential oils. For me, lavender is relaxing, eucalyptus is cleansing, and spermint is energizing. I put lavender in my bath, eucalyptus in my shower exfoliator and spearmint in my lip and foot balm. I also love massaging in my foot lotion and night-time moisturizer. For the feet, focus on the arch then moving towards the toes. For the face, focus on the orbital bone: eyebrows, down to below the under eye area- continuous circles, always moving up and away.

Try a sleepy time tea
I love the mix of camomile, spearmint, and other herbal ingredients in a warm cup of tea before bed. See my short review here, which includes my bedtime favourite.

Practice deep breathing
1. Lie down in your preferred sleep position
2. Breathe in through your nose on a count of three seconds
3. Breathe out through your nose on a count of six seconds
4. Repeat until you fall asleep
Magic.


Be excited for breakfast
Try not to eat late into the evening to avoid going to sleep with a belly full of food. If you are starving, drink some water to help eliminate the empty feeling, then get to sleep early. I like to plan a yummy breakfast for the following morning, so I have something to look forward to.

Get a good alarm clock
There are too many crazy alarm clocks available to not wake up in the mornings. I've even seen one that noisily rolls around on the floor, and another that mimics sunrise in your face. The classic iPod dock is my fave, with music playing continuously until I decide to stop it. I also like how I can have different times set for the weekend and weekdays.

Whether you're a morning person or not,  a good nights sleep of 7-9 hours each night will add years to your life.

Sweet dreams!
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