We’re all obsessed with sleep. In fact, we’re most likely currently day-dreaming about getting into bed. There is perhaps no better feeling than changing into your softest pajamas after a long day, lighting a candle or two, putting on your favorite meditation app, and melting into the heaven that is a clean, warm, gorgeous bed. It’s an oasis and a reprieve, and we get to do it every single night. Now if that isn’t something to be grateful for. The one drawback? For many of us, falling — and staying — asleep can be a bit of a nightmare.

Getting enough quality sleep is essential for leading a healthy life. It affects our well-being as much as nutrition and exercise do. It’s the time during which our bodies recharge, cleanse and rest, and when our minds leave the worries of our world for the wonders of the world. Sleep affects nearly every aspect of how we operate — our moods, our productivity levels, our appearance, our hunger levels, and our anxiety (or lack thereof). Ah, sweet, sweet, complicated sleep.

You may be nodding your head in agreement, and simultaneously stressing about the bouts of insomnia that you experience. Life is beyond stressful — but we’ll teach you how to improve your bedtime rituals for better shuteye. Here, our tips on how to sleep better, night in and night out. 

P.S. We love sleep so much, that we launched a Sleep Shop. Yes, dreams do come true. Now, here’s how to sleep better at night.

Turn Into a Sleep Machine with the Aid of Sleep Machines

If you live in a noisy apartment or simply love soothing sounds, invest in a sleep machine. This one, by Snooz, is minimalist in appearance, so you can have it by your bed without having to look at an unappealing device. The glow of your winter-white bedding needn’t be offset by bulky, un-slightly machinery. And the sounds that it produces? They’re just as beautiful. 

Wound Up? Establish Wind-Down Routines:

You probably had a nighttime routine when you were a kid, and you probably slept pretty well during those years. So why not have one now, as an adult? Firstly, set a bedtime for yourself. This can be as early as 8 p.m., but if you love nighttime, try to shoot for something before 11 p.m. — and keep it consistent. Try to go to sleep around the same time every night. You’ll find that your body falls asleep more quickly, and that you’ll wake up earlier, feeling more rested. Turn off your electronics, or at least put them on night mode, or look to blue-light-blocking screens to prevent screen time from disrupting bedtime.

Next, establish a routine that relaxes you. This may entail some combination of stretching, journaling, breathing, meditating or speaking to your nearest and dearest about your day. Set your intentions for a peaceful, deep rest, and a beautiful next day. Pro tip: We love thinking about what we’re grateful for right before we fall asleep. 

Move During the Day, Nourish Early

Exercise during the day! Even if you’re having a lazy Sunday at home, make sure that you clean your house or go for a walk. This way you’ll burn off enough energy to rest properly at night. If you can, try to avoid eating large meals right before bed. During sleep, our bodies rest and cleanse, and heavy meals get in the way of our body’s ability to do so. If you need a healthy snack before bed, by all means have one! But try to have something that allows you to feel full enough to sleep without feeling stuffed. Other things that you can do early on for your body to prepare for the best sleep at night? Avoid caffeine later in the day, avoid sugar, avoid alcohol when possible, and try to expose yourself to natural sunlight during the day. If you live in a grey environment, try a SAD lamp. The light will help your body’s circadian rhythm.

Chill Pill: Supplements

There are tons of great supplements on the market, most of which contain sleep-aiding ingredients, such as valerian root, ashwagandha, passion flower, melatonin, L-Theanine and magnesium. If you have a hard time falling or staying asleep, pop an herbal pill — they can work wonders, and they’re more gentle on the body and mind than a chemical-filled alternative. 

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Some options we love: Liquid I.V. Sleep Box, Gryph & IvyRose Call It a Night Sleep Support Herbal Supplement, and The Nue Co. Sleep Drops. Each of these is gentle, made of all-natural ingredients, and formulated to help you fall deep into a dreamy sleep. Plus, they’re all available in our Sleep Shop.

Conscious Dream Worlds: Meditation and Breathing

My personal favorite? Meditating. Meditating before bed, and breathing deeply, allows for your to enter a space akin to a cognitive dream world. Breathing deeply relaxes the body, mind and nervous system. It’s something that many of us forget to do during the day, and it’s essential. As for meditating? It’s been scientifically proven to help ease anxiety, relieve us of stress, re-center us, and make us happier. Meditating removes us from the pettiness and chaos of life and aligns us with our true selves and with the universe. Meditation can be difficult, but that’s one of the points of doing it. Your mind will continue to have thoughts, but meditation will allow you to simply witness them — not to get tangled in them. Set aside ten or so minutes first thing in the morning to start your day off with clarity.

Bed of Heaven

Turn your bed from a mattress to an oasis. Invest in the best with some incredible and luxurious bedding, and top it off with a Baloo Weighted Blanket. It’ll ease your anxiety, keep you warm, and make you feel safe. How, you may ask? Read more about the wonders of weighted blankets for anxiety here

Bonus? Spritz your pillows with a scented, soothing sleep mist. You may not live in a hotel and therefore not have someone washing your sheets every day, but you may as well feel like it, no? Scented candles and incense can further enhance your nighttime escape. Just when you thought that the notion of bedtime couldn’t be more enticing.

Sleeping in a cold, dark room has also been proven to be immensely helpful for getting enough restful, so make your room into a cave and you may just sleep like a bear.

Your New Essential: Essential Oils

Essential oils can aid in helping to calm the nervous system and to let the body know that it’s time to wind down. Scents such as lavender and chamomile are beautiful, natural relaxation and sleep aids. Essential oils can (depending on the type — read the instructions on the bottle) be applied to the skin, used in a diffuser, or simply smelled straight from the bottle. We love Aromatherapy Associate’s Deep Relax Sleep Mist. If the oil is free of color, spritz it onto your sheets and pillow for an extra dose of self-care.

So there you have it. The best sleep begins with paying attention to your habits and actions early in the day, and keeps going until your eyes are sealed for the night. Find a routine that you love, stick to it, and sleep in complete and utter peace. You’ll feel more invigorated, productive and happy the next day.

We hope that this article didn’t bore you, but if it did, try reading it again before bed. 

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