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If you’re a member of our awesome private Facebook community, you’ll know that it’s a great place for KIC Girls to share their health and wellness tips. One question we’ve noticed that has been asked again and again is, ‘how do I get more sleep?’ So we’re inspired to dedicate this week’s blog post to this important question.
Please remember that, as with any health and wellness blog, these tips are based on our personal experiences and shouldn’t be taken as a replacement for seeing a GP if you are struggling with a lack of sleep. Here are our tips…
Everyone’s talking about sleep hygiene but what the heck does this even mean? Well listen up girl. If it’s 10pm and you’re still browsing Insta, you’ve got poor sleep hygiene! Sorry to break it to you!
Sleep hygiene means breaking bad habits like using your phone and overstimulating your senses in the hour or two before bed. So turn that phone off and instead use this time to slowly wind down and relax. Read a book, write in your journal and get cosy. It’s all about switching that racing mind off.
No, this isn’t an excuse to justify that online shopping habit (lol). Having said that, your surroundings are important to getting a good night’s sleep. You want to make your bedroom a space you enjoy relaxing in so you have our full permission to order new bedding, a nice lamp and a scented candle (lavender is great for encouraging sleep) if this is in your budget.
At nighttime, your bedroom should be dark, quiet and not too hot. You may want to invest in some blackout blinds to get your room super dark. If this isn’t possible, a silk sleep mask does the trick for a fraction of the cost and is worth every penny. If you live in a noisy area (or have a noisy family – hello doggos!) get a white noise machine to mask disrupting sounds. You can get these for cheaper than you would think online (search for the basic kind meant for babies) and there are even apps that can create the same effect.
OK this blog post is really pulling in some crazy names but bear with us because this one is important. A circadian rhythm is the natural 24 hour cycle that all living things adhere too. Without getting too technical, our circadian rhythm may be linked to our hormones, brain function and sleeping and eating patterns. So when we mess with this, we are literally messing with Mother Nature.
It’s a great idea to try to stick to a “natural” daily routine. Our bodies often respond best when we get up with the sun and complete our strenuous activity first thing. We personally prefer to work out first thing in the morning and not only because this gets our workout out of the way. We find that this leaves us energised for the day, whereas working out at night can get our adrenaline pumping, making it harder to wind down in time for bed. If you must workout at night, perhaps try a gentle yoga sesh that will relax the body and mind.
Hands up if you’re guilty of staying up late for absolutely no reason and then hating yourself the next morning when you struggle to get out of bed! It may be a little boring, but having a set bedtime and sticking to it is a great way to improve the quality of your sleep. Of course, don’t be too strict with yourself. It’s totally fine to stay out late every now and again, as long as you stick to a routine as much as possible, including on weekends.
We don’t need to be geniuses to figure out that a stressed, overactive mind will struggle to get to sleep. That’s why we love our Keep it Cleaner meditation exercises. They’re all less than 10 minutes, meaning they’re super easy to do even for meditation newbies. Other stress-relieving activities include taking a long bath or just doing some gentle stretching followed by a 2 minute savasana (check out our yoga workouts for more on this.)
We hope these tips have been useful for you! Be sure to share your tips and insights with us in our Private Facebook Community!