The idea of self-care has gained a ton of popularity in recent years and has been great for people to prioritize their overall health and wellness in many ways. Self-care is different for everyone, whether through a relaxing bubble bath, reading your favourite book, binge-watching your favourite TV show, eating a delicious healthy meal.
Do you include sleep as a part of your self-care routine? Sleep is indeed one of the most important forms of self-care, as it has so many benefits that include boosting your immune system, improving your mood and helping with your heart function, just to name a few. Here are a few tips for incorporating sleep into your self care routine
- Build a solid sleep routine: Our internal clocks thrive on routine for proper sleep and a good routine will help you to take the time to properly wind down before bedtime and sleep better. Everyone’s routine will be different based on your individual needs, preferences and daily schedule but try to keep it consistent and realistic for you.
- Create a relaxing sleep environment: The bedroom is meant to be a place that will promote relaxation and calmness. If your sleeping environment causes you stress or anxiety in any way, then this will have an overall negative effect on your sleep. A few ways to help with this include keeping your bedroom dark, diffusing some relaxing essential oils and keeping the temperature on the cooler side.
- Limit technology: Many people like to spend time on their electronic devices before bedtime but avoid doing this! Not only can this cause unnecessary anxiety, but the light on your devices can interfere with your sleep cycle and potentially lead to insomnia and daytime fatigue. Try to power off all your devices at least a half hour before bedtime and find another activity that will help you wind down before bedtime, such as yoga or reading.
- Practice healthy daytime habits: Maintaining healthy diet and exercise habits are essential to a good night’s sleep, however there are a few extra things you can do to improve your sleep beyond that. Try and limit daytime naps and avoid all forms of caffeine at least 6-8 hours before bedtime. Also limit alcohol and other recreational drugs before bedtime such as tobacco and cannabis that have been known to interfere negatively with your sleep cycle.