Sleep. Get enough of it and you feel like you can touch the sky. Have a bad night however and it can be an almighty mission to make it through to lunch. Unfortunately, these days it seems like those touch the sky days are increasingly few and far between. What happened to us all? Why is getting a good night’s sleep so difficult all of a sudden. Well it could be something to do with the fast-paced nature of modern life, with all its distractions and all its screens, so very many screens.
Falling Asleep Hacks Every Woman Must Know
Modern life has conspired to rob many of us of the rest our bodies and minds so badly need. So what can we do? Well, short of selling your possessions, throwing your smartphone into the closest lake and going to live with the Amish, there isn’t a huge amount you can do about living in the modern world. Here are a few little hacks I’ve found that that can have a big impact on how well you sleep. Read on below and I will let you in on a few not-so-obvious sleep tips.
Now bear with on this one it needs a little explaining.
One of the main reasons we struggle to sleep is because we’re simply overstimulated and undertired when our heads hit the pillow. Our monkey mind (more on that later) is still running through all the problems and concerns of the day when it should be powering down for sleep. The result is a frustrating hour or more of tossing and turning before sleep finally sneaks up on us.
One weird but wonderful hack to reset our racing mind is to dunk our face in a bowl of ice-cold water. Yep! You read correctly. Dunk your face in some cold, cold water. Apparently the sensation of the cold triggers a physical phenomenon, an involuntary one, known to science as the Mammalian Dive Reflex.
Instead of shocking you awake as you imagine it would it in fact does the opposite, it distracts you, destresses you and causes a lowering of both the heart rate and blood pressure. Two things perfect for sleep.
Get your tense on!
Another weird one for you here. This hack is great for helping you nod off or helping you get back to sleep should you have woken in the night. It is basically a more scienced-up version of counting sheep with a little bit of exercise thrown in.
All you have to do is tense. I know it sounds a little counter intuitive, isn’t being too tense the problem in the first place? Well, yes but a different kind of tense. This one involves tensing your muscles in a systematic fashion. Read on I shall explain more.
The next time you are lying awake in bed tense you toes for five seconds, then slowly release the clench for thirty seconds. Now, tense your calves, then release, Next your thighs, etc, etc. Slowly work your way up the body tensing and releasing each muscle group in turn.
Known as Progressive Muscle Relaxation (PRM) in sleep therapy circles. The technique has been around over a century now and has been helped countless people across the world find the zzzzs they need.
The method works on two levels, physically the tensing and relaxing helps to relax the body. While mentally the focusing on body parts takes your mind away from whatever concern was keeping you awake.
As with anything new, getting the hang of PRM will take a little time to get the hang of – but soon enough you will be tensing yourself all the way to Snoozeville in no time at all.
For more tips on how to wake up feeling like you can take on the world, check out this handy guide.
Everyone needs a little bit of mood lighting
Almost every single sleep-related article on the web will tell you to avoid screens in the evening. The blue light they emit is truly terrible for your circadian rhythms. Now if you’re serious about getting your sleep back you should definitely listen to this piece of advice but, you know that already so I’m not going to go there. Instead I am going to focus on the other lights in your life.
All artificial light, whether it comes from a screen or an overhead light bulb messes with sleep. Artificial light is a relatively new invention, at least it is in evolutionary timescales. Our cave woman minds are still conditioned to associate light with alertness and dark with sleep.
So what can you do? Ditch the bulb. Or at the very least dim the bulb. As soon as the sun sets outside you should change up the lighting in your home. Turn off overhead lights and turn on side lamps instead. The closer you get to bedtime the less and less light you should expose yourself to.
I am a big fan of candles, not only do they get me in the sleepy mood they also make my home a far more atmospheric, and dare I say a more romantic place to be. Make sure you check out this DIY Sleepy Time Pillow Mist too!!
There you have it girlfriend, three not-so-obvious hacks that may help you find your way back to Sleepytown. Give them a go, why not? What’s the worst that could happen? It’s not like you’re going to lose anymore sleep is it!
What Sleeping Hacks Do You Use?
This post was originally published on February 18, 2020 and updated on July 16, 2021.
WE ARE A PARTICIPANT IN THE AMAZON SERVICES LLC ASSOCIATES PROGRAM, AN AFFILIATE ADVERTISING PROGRAM DESIGNED TO PROVIDE A MEANS FOR US TO EARN FEES BY LINKING TO AMAZON.COM AND AFFILIATED SITES.
Kristin C says
I could definitely use these tips – thanks for sharing!
These are great tips. I also had no idea about blue light. I am sure I am about to research that all day now.
I have been having a problem sleeping lstely
Falling asleep is tough! I am so busy with the kids all day and tired. Then, they finally fall asleep and I get a burst of energy. It’s my real only alone time ALL day every day. I have considered waking up earlier instead but it’s such a hard cycle to break. I will definitely try these tips! Thanks!
Sue Reddel says
I’ve heard so many different tips for help falling asleep but yours are truly unique and sound like they could really work. I’m going to give the cold water a try. I’ll let you know if it works!
Nadalie Bardowell says
I would have thought the complete opposite of the face dunking in cold water. Yes, it would distract your busy mind but I would feel more alert than anything afterward. I feel like I have heard of the tense one, tense up then release. Sometimes laying in bed I don’t realize I am tense until I feel myself relax and focus on my breathing.
Thanks for the tips. I am usually so tired I fall asleep as soon as I lay down.
Sometimes is so frustrating to go to bed and not fall asleep specially when you are so tired! You advices are simple and easy to follow so I will try them!
Monica Y says
I have been suffering from insomnia so this is perfect, I will start applying these tips tonight and hopefully will be able to fall asleep soon. I never thought about some of them. So helpful, thanks for sharing
I remember sleep. I miss it! I need to try these relaxation techniques to help fall asleep faster. I had read about screens before bedtime; I have to admit that one is probably going to be the hardest for me to eliminate. But trying the muscle tensing trick will be a great routine to get into.
Back before the kids, I was able to fall asleep so quickly. Now things are always a rush, and I go until I crash. But that doesn’t mean the best sleep. The other nights, I often have trouble falling asleep. I think I could definitely use these techniques to calm myself and fall asleep faster. Tensing and relaxing muscles sounds like a great strategy.
Aileen Adalid says
I love these tips! I’m packed with so much work lately that I sometimes mess up my sleeping patterns, making it hard to sleep on time. I especially love the tip about the lighting! It has helped me personally.