Numerous studies and leading health experts confirm it in almost every magazine: A healthy sleep is the basis for a productive day and in the long run one of the most important success factors for a happy life. Those who sleep more also get more done – even though they spend more time in bed.
Many people can sympathize with this theory. In practice, however, it seems almost impossible for them to sleep longer and better. But there are simple tricks you can use to improve your sleep habits.
Here are ten of them:
1. Dim the Lights Before You Go to Bed!
Bright light prevents the natural production of melatonin, the hormone that controls the human body’s circadian rhythm and causes sleepiness. So if you only turn off the lights completely when you’re about to go to bed, your brain will think it must be awake by then. However, if you dim the lights in your room beforehand, you are slowly preparing your body for the upcoming sleep phase.
2. Do Without Melatonin Tablets!
Speaking of melatonin, there is a difference between melatonin that is produced by the body and melatonin tablets that you can buy as a supplement. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends avoiding melatonin pills because they don’t work long-term, can worsen insomnia, and have other negative side effects.
3. Establish Fixed Sleeping Times!
If your weekly schedule allows, go to bed at the same time each day and get up at the same time in the morning. Many people struggle to get out of bed early during the week and sleep in late at the weekend. They usually stay up later on Friday and Saturday because they don’t have to get up early the following day. But this imbalance can mess up your entire sleep schedule. Monday morning then feels like you live in a different time zone – with jet lag. It will then take until Wednesday for your body to recover and adjust. And by then half a week of productivity will have passed.
4. Drink Less Alcohol!
Even if it felt different when you were last drunk: alcohol is a sleep killer. And the later you drink alcoholic beverages in the evening, the more your sleep quality suffers. Alcohol disrupts natural sleep rhythms and causes other problems that prevent healthy sleep. You have to decide: Do you want to drink or can you have fun and get a good night’s sleep and get off to a great start the next day?
5. Regulate Your Caffeine Consumption!
Similar to alcohol, caffeine interrupts your natural sleep rhythm and thus prevents optimal sleeping conditions. Caffeine has a slightly delayed effect, but as soon as it reaches the brain via the blood, it prevents the docking of the messenger substance adenosine, which makes us tired. Caffeine also shortens the deep sleep phases. So watch your caffeine consumption and try not to drink caffeinated drinks from the early afternoon onwards
6. Ban Your Smartphone from Your Bedroom!
Your smartphone disturbs your sleep more than you think. Firstly, the blue light of the display works against your natural melatonin production and secondly, it offers you endless possibilities for distraction that can keep you from getting enough sleep. Every text you read in bed, every app you open, and every website you look at before falling asleep delays your sleep. Even if you use your smartphone as an alarm clock, it makes sense to keep it outside of your bedroom so you have to get up to turn off the alarm. This way, you’re much more likely to wake up and skip the snooze feature.
7. Cover Your Alarm Clock Display!
If you keep your watch or alarm clock near your bed, make sure you can’t see the time directly. Otherwise, the display will make you nervous and will put unnecessary pressure on you to fall asleep as quickly as possible – and it will only have the opposite effect. Also, your brain will (consciously or subconsciously) calculate all night long: “If I fall asleep now, I have 7 hours and 13 minutes until I have to get up again.”
8. Switch to a Passive Mood!
Most people are busy all day. Even when they come home after work, household, family, friends, or hobbies are on the agenda. The first time they switch off is when they go to bed. Only then do they switch from an active to a passive attitude and begin to process the day. But it is precisely this process that disturbs your sleep. It’s better to take 10 minutes before bed and reflect on your day than to lie awake in bed and not sleep.
9. Write Down Your Thoughts!
A simple way to clear your head before you go to sleep is to write down your thoughts. This can be in the form of a journal, making a mind map, or making a simple list. It is only important that you clear your head and outsource all disturbing thoughts – on paper. In this way, you close with the past day and can go to bed without embarrassment.
This way, you’ll be able to see patterns emerging and be able to deal with your anxieties more efficiently. Are you constantly worried about upcoming deadlines? In that case, you might want to consider using an essay writing service to help deal with your assignments.
10. Plan Your Next Day!
A common reason why many people lie awake at night and cannot fall asleep is thinking about the future. You can easily solve this blockage by taking five minutes in the evening and planning your next day in advance. Determine the most important tasks that you have to take care of tomorrow, write down important reminders and create a clear to-do list. Depending on the situation, you can also go further into the future and outline tasks for the next few weeks and months. The main thing is that you don’t take these thoughts to bed with you.
Fatigue isn’t cool or a sign of hard work and determination. Fatigue is harmful and prevents you from reaching your goals. If you’re constantly tired, you’ll never reach your full potential. You will only develop slowly and will be dissatisfied in the long run.
You have to prevent that at all costs. The 10+1 tips above will help you break the spiral of fatigue and finally throw yourself into your studies with full energy.
For starters, it’s enough if you make one or two points and stick to them from today. Improving your sleep quality is a long-term project where small steps can make big changes – you just have to do them regularly.