12 Things to Do This Weekend If You Want to Sleep Well
As you were growing up, your parents probably warned you that sleeping late on weekends would disrupt your sleep schedule for the rest of the week.
Many health experts would still agree with their advice, but one study suggests that the truth may be a little more complicated.
Swedish researchers found that subjects who averaged at least 7 hours of sleep a night lived longer than those who got only 5 hours or less.
However, when the shorter sleepers made up for lost slumber on weekends, they lived just as long.
While it’s certain that adequate sleep is vital, individual needs vary widely and many factors are involved.
Run down this list to see how your weekend habits may be affecting your rest.
Sleep Habits for Weekends
1. Pace yourself.
Set a bedtime that will give you at least 7 hours of sleep. If you’re planning to sleep longer, add on a half hour at a time to find a schedule that recharges you without disrupting your sleep on weekdays.
2. Skip snooze.
Planning ahead the night before beats hitting the snooze button in the morning.
Fragmented sleep usually leaves you feeling drowsier and more disoriented.
3. Get out of bed.
Years ago, it was popular to read the Sunday papers in bed. Even if you now read the news on your phone, go to another room.
You may find it easier to fall asleep if you reserve your bedroom just for sleeping.
4. Create bedtime rituals.
Take advantage of any extra time you have on weekends. Treat yourself to a soothing bath or a hot cup of chamomile tea that will help you doze off faster.
5. Take a nap.
Depending on your individual body chemistry, naps may refresh you or keep you up at night.
You can increase your chances of having a positive experience by finding a quiet place, blocking out light, and avoiding naps within 5 hours of your bedtime.
6. Keep a journal.
A sleep diary is an excellent way to evaluate your progress.
You can use it for yourself or share it with your doctor.
Other Lifestyle Habits for Weekends
1. Exercise regularly.
Enhanced sleep is just one of the benefits of physical activity.
As a bonus, a morning run or tennis game will expose you to early light that wakes up your brain and primes you to sleep at night.
2. Eat light.
Do you spend weekends dining out and attending parties? Heavy meals and snacks before bed can upset your stomach and make you toss and turn. Cut down on calories before bed.
3. Limit alcohol.
Wine and cocktails may make you sleepy, but they interfere with the quality of your rest. Switch to water in the late hours.
4. Turn off the TV.
What if you’re binge watching instead of dreaming? Restrict TV time to 1 or 2 hours and turn off all devices at least 2 hours before retiring.
5. Leave work behind.
Many workers are bringing their jobs home with them. For the sake of your health and productivity, try to take weekends off.
Most studies show that performance peaks at about a maximum of 35 to 39 hours a week.
6. Adjust as needed.
Expect your sleep needs to change over time. In addition to age, factors like medical conditions and your level of activity may affect how much sleep you need and how well you sleep.
Most experts believe that any sleep deficit can be hazardous to your health so make sleep a priority each night of the week.
Practicing positive sleep hygiene on weekends will help you to be more energetic and productive throughout the week.
15 Tips for Dealing With Insomnia
Insomnia can be quite common. Everyone struggles to fall asleep at times.
It can be frustrating to just lie in bed wanting nothing other than to just fall asleep. The longer it takes, the more anxious you become about it.
Fortunately, we can all survive without a few nights of sleep, but it can be uncomfortable.
It also makes everyday life more challenging until we can get caught back up on our sleep.
Take an active approach when dealing with insomnia: 1. Get up on time.
Sleeping in can create insomnia. Maybe you’re not awake long enough to be tired at night.
Make yourself get up on time, even if you didn’t sleep well. Otherwise, you’re just creating a bigger challenge for yourself. 2. Get up earlier.
Maybe you’re getting up on time, but you’re simply sleeping too much. Some people need less sleep than others. Experiment with an earlier wake up time. 3. Do something physical each day.
If you’re mentally stimulated all day, but aren’t getting enough physical stimulation, you might have trouble sleeping at night. 4. Do something mental each day.
Perhaps the opposite is true. You might be physically active all day but engage in little mental activity. You need both to sleep soundly. 5. Avoid eating within three hours of going to bed.
Digesting food requires a lot of energy and can be quite stimulating. Allow your body a few hours to digest your food before attempting to sleep. 6. Avoid caffeine.
Caffeine can be a challenge for many people. The medical community often suggests a cut-off time of 2PM. 7. Avoid drinking within two hours of bedtime.
Avoid drinking any liquids within two hours of heading to bed. That should be enough time for your body to process the fluids, and you can empty your bladder before bed.
Otherwise, you might be getting up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom. 8. Only use your bedroom for sleeping.
Avoid watching TV, reading, or working in your bedroom. The bedroom is for sleeping. 9. Find the best temperature for you.
If you’re too hot or too cold, you won’t sleep as well. 10. Change your mattress.
Maybe you need a new mattress. Most people have a definite preference regarding mattress firmness or softness.
Is your mattress sagging? If possible, spend some money on a good mattress. 11. Avoid alcohol.
Alcohol is a depressant. It depresses your ability to sleep. Just because it makes you sleepy doesn’t mean it will help you sleep soundly. 12. Avoid naps.
This varies for each person. If you’re sleeping during the day, you might be one who has trouble sleeping at night. 13. Get up if you can’t sleep.
Avoid lying in bed for too long if you find you can’t sleep. Get up and do something relaxing until you’re tired and think you can sleep.
Try not to get too upset over an occasional bout of insomnia. You’ll be just fine.
If you frequently have a hard time falling asleep, try the above tips or schedule an appointment to see your physician. You’ll be sleeping like a baby again soon enough.
Ways to Relax That Require 10 Minutes or Less
While it would be nice to just take a long vacation or check out of work each day for a few hours, most of us have limited time and opportunities to relax.
However, we usually do have 10 minutes here and there throughout the day.
There are several ways you can relax in just 10 minutes or less. Do this a few times a day, and you’ll find that you might not need that long vacation.
Use these methods to relax in as little as 10 minutes: 1. Meditate.
The benefits of meditating are many. It’s incredibly popular right now but has been around for thousands of years.
Experts often claim that even just one minute of meditation per hour is enough to gain benefits. 2. Control your breath.
Your breath is one of the few parts of your physiology you can control. Slower, deeper, breaths will help you to relax.
Focus on the feeling of your breath passing through your mouth or nostrils. Count your breaths if you find that helps. 3. Visualize a peaceful scene.
Our moods follow our thoughts. Think about something pleasant, and you can expect to experience a more enjoyable mood. 4. Spend time with your pet.
Pets are a blessing. They require little and ask for even less. They’re always happy to see you.
Cuddle up with your pet and notice how much better you feel. Your pet will love the extra attention, too. Don’t have a pet? Borrow a friend’s pet. 5. Talk to a friend.
Call up a friend, or even better, have a face to face.
A few minutes spent chatting with a trusted confidant can do wonders for your stress levels. You’ll also be maintaining your relationships. 6. Take a short walk.
A long walk is even better, but if you only have 10 minutes, a short walk can help a lot if you’re feeling stressed.
Pay close attention to your surroundings while you walk. It will keep your mind off your challenges for a few minutes. 7. Listen to music.
Music has an amazing ability to alter one’s mood. Think of a few songs that will put you in a mood you’d rather feel.
Listen away! If you don’t happen to have those songs available at the moment, YouTube has just about every song available for free.
If you’re regularly feeling stressed, it’s important to do something about it. Not only is it miserable to feel stressed all the time, but it’s terrible for your health.
If you want to relax, make time for it each day. Ten minutes can be enough to take the edge off your stress levels. Don’t allow 10 minutes to go to waste. Use them to relax!What’s your biggest issue?
How do you handle it – or can you think of any additional tips you can share with others if you don’t have an issue with this in your life?
Share them with us in our Comments – or share this blog post on Twitter or Facebook or wherever you feel it could help someone you know.
Cheers, Helene Malmsio
Related Reading: https://www.discoveryhub.net/sleep-stress-management.html