How to optimise your sleep?

Sleep is one of the fundamental things for the proper functioning of the human body. It should be the first thing to be optimised to have a profound impact on the overall health of the body.

1) Sunlight

Expose yourself to sunlight by going outside within 30 to 60 minutes of waking up (an early morning walk is ideal). Repeat in the late afternoon, before sunset. If you wake up before sunrise and want to be awake, turn on the artificial lights and go outside once the sun rises.

On a clear, cloudless day: expose yourself to morning and afternoon sunlight for 10 min; on a cloudy day: 20 min; on a very cloudy day: 30-60 min. If you live in a place where light is very minimal, consider an artificial daylight simulator source.

Do not wear sunglasses for this practice (if it is not dangerous). Contact lenses and prescription glasses are fine.

Under no circumstances should you look directly at sunlight or other bright lights, which could be dangerous for your retina! That said, we advise you not to wear a wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses or stay in the shade if you want to optimise the "waking up" of your circadian clock.

2) Wake up

Wake up at the same time every day and go to bed as soon as you start to feel sleepy. Pushing through the late night drowsiness and falling asleep too late (for you) is one of the reasons people wake up at 3am and can't get back to sleep.

3) Caffeine

Avoid caffeine in the 8-10 hours before bedtime. Beware of drinks with hidden caffeine (Soda, Tea, Mate)  

4) Sleep hypnosis

If you have trouble sleeping, insomnia or anxiety about sleep, try sleep self-hypnosis. There are many apps or videos on Youtube that can help you learn this practice. It only takes 10 to 15 minutes and will help you rewire your nervous system so you can relax more quickly.

5) Evening light

Avoid looking at bright, white lights, especially overhead lights in the evening. Watch out for TV screens, computers and telephones. Also, do not engage in any activity 

6) Naps

If you do take naps, limit naps to less than 90 minutes or don't nap at all.

7) Middle of the night 

If you wake up at night to go to the toilet, for example, use only as much artificial lighting as you need to move around safely at night. (Which, by the way, is normal to wake up about once a night) but if you can't get back to sleep, consider doing a "Yoga Nidra" protocol.

 

8) Ambient temperature 

Keep the room in which you sleep cool and dark and layer blankets that you can remove.

Your body needs a drop in temperature of 1 to 3 degrees to fall asleep and stay asleep effectively. The rise in body temperature is one of the reasons why you wake up. So keep your bedroom cool and remove the covers if necessary. If it's too hot, you'll need to use a cooling device and that's harder than just throwing on blankets if you get too hot.

 

9) Alcohol

Drinking alcohol has many bad effects on your sleep. We'll be doing a full article on this subject. But in the meantime, we advise you to avoid alcohol if you want to get a good night's sleep.

 

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