The election’s over and the holidays are about to start. No matter who you voted for—whether you’re stressed out or bouncing off the walls from this week’s election results—you probably haven’t gotten much sleep. Plus, with Thanksgiving and Christmas right around the corner, the stress and excitement of the holiday season is more than enough to keep you lying awake at night until 2017. That’s why we’ve put together the top 5 things you need to do to get through the holidays with a good night’s rest.
1 – Train Your Mind
It sounds like a weird thing to suggest, but you can in fact train yourself to let go of troubling and fearful thoughts. Both Physicians and Psychologists agree that stress can directly affect physical tension in the body, which can easily keep you from falling asleep. Have you ever went to bed with the fear that you won’t get enough sleep? Hasn’t that made it even harder to fall asleep? Stress-induced insomnia can be totally eliminated by changing your perspective. The next time you go to bed worried about a particular situation, try pretending that the situation is already resolved. After all, the problems of the world are especially beyond your control when you’re lying in bed. Distract yourself with unrelated and positive thoughts. You’ll be surprised how quickly you fall asleep.
2 – Eliminate caffeine way before bedtime
Caffeine can easily stay in your body 12 hours after consumption. Depending on your metabolism and physical makeup, this could be more or less. Regardless, if you plan on going to be around midnight, you should plan on quitting all caffeine before Noon.
Ultimately, people who get the best sleep are totally caffeine free and don’t consume it at all. However, if you can’t control your craving, try substitutions such as herbal tea, caffeine free beverages, or just plain old water.
3 – Go on a sleepy diet
There are so many different foods containing nutrients that support sleep. Tryptophan, magnesium, selenium, melatonin and vitamin D are just a few, and they can provide you with not only a quick sleep, but a more energizing morning when you wake up. For dinner, try focusing on high quality proteins and complex carbohydrates (rice, grilled chicken and roasted vegetables). For dessert, avoid heavy desserts in favor of small, simple fruits such as cherries, grapes or light frozen yogurts.
4 – Sleep early and always on time
The human body is built upon routine, whether we’re awake or asleep. Getting on a proper sleep schedule is imperative for a good night’s sleep. For instance, if you fall asleep an hour later than you did yesterday, your mind and body will be thrown off balance the next morning, which can cost time, energy, and especially the increase the difficulty in falling asleep the following night. Studies have shown that the best sleep occurs between 10pm and 6am.
5 – RELAX
Nowadays, there’s so much going on and so much more to do. You have your smartphone, digital devices and an endless plethora of Netflix shows to choose from. These types of stimulation can ruin your entire night of sleep. Try relaxing 1-2 hours before bedtime. This doesn’t mean you have to meditate upside or do yoga under soothing music. Choose what you find relaxing. This could involve reading a calming book, taking a bath or simply talking about the day with your loved one. Either way, the last couple of hours of your evening should revolve around relaxation