I’ve never been great with sleep. I’m not very good at it and am not one of those people who really loves sleeping to begin with because I can think of a million other things I’d rather be doing. But I also know I do not practice the healthiest sleeping habits.
I have a lot going on in my personal life right now so I’ve decided to really try to take care of myself. One of the first things I know needs to change is my sleeping habits. It turns out, I truly suck at sleeping. Not sleeping well can lead to a lot of health issues so I want to avoid that from happening.
There are a lot of things we do that impact how we sleep, and you probably don’t even realize how much they’re affecting you. Here are 7 bad sleeping habits you should try to kick:
Not Understanding How You Sleep
If you wake up a lot or you have trouble falling asleep, it's important to understand why. Pay attention to what you're doing before bed and make note if you're constantly hitting the snooze button. I downloaded a sleep tracker on my phone that helps me figure out how I really slept so I can see what changes I need to make.
Binging On Sleep Over The Weekend
Weekends are great because you get to sleep in right? And you can nap all day! This actually isn't good for you. Even though you may feel like you need to catch up on sleep, binging on sleep in a short period of time can actually screw up your sleep cycle even more.
Using Your Phone/Computer/Tablet Before Or In Bed
I know this one is super hard, and I'm totally guilty of it. Experts want you to power down your electronics an hour before you're ready to go to bed! The glow from screens stimulates your brain and makes it more difficult for you to go to bed. If you have to do something before you go to sleep, stick to reading a real book or doing something that doesn't involve a screen.
Doing Your Homework Or Working In Bed
You want your mind to associate your bed with sleep, not with doing your homework. Finishing your algebra assignment in bed, as comfortable as it may be, is going to confuse your brain. Create a separate space to do homework or study so that your bed is reserved for sleeping.
Taking in caffeine near bedtime will not help you sleep. I've heard you shouldn't have caffeine after noon and after 4 PM, but no one can seem to agree. I have a large caffeine intake so having coffee in the afternoon doesn't really impact my sleep. But if I had a cup say, around eight, it would totally keep me up.
Not Having A Bedtime Routine
Having a set routine before you go to bed helps your body understand that it's time to chill out and get tired. If you don't have a routine, it can be a lot harder to actually fall asleep. Take some time to unwind and relax before bed whether it's stretching or even something as simple as perfecting your night-time beauty regimen.
Not Establishing A Regular Sleep Time
This is tied into having a routine, but it's really important to establish a regular sleep time. Your body gets confused when you go to sleep at a different time every night, so try to establish a regular and feasible time. Then you can plan your bedtime routine and be ready to snooze.
Do you do any of the above? Do you have trouble sleeping? Tell us in the comments!