I have recently realized that I am an adult, living in an adult world. As such, I am expected to rise and go to work on time. I am expected to work well and efficiently, and I am expected to not be tired.
Yet coming out of undergrad, I had terrible sleeping patterns. Habits that I had been building since my first year in undergrad, when I would stay up until 2am, because my roommate wanted to stay up until 2am. Watching DVDs because I had already done my work, or was planning on doing it the next day,
I am very picky, and I like my sleep – it is very difficult for me to operate on less than at least seven hours. I prefer eight or nine, but seven works in a pinch.
During my internship this summer, I realized I needed to shift my sleeping to happen earlier if I wanted to wake up earlier. This meant that I could no longer go to bed at eleven or twelve or one. This meant that I had to be in bed and asleep at 10pm at the latest.
So how did I do it?
A nice work-out during the day exerts extra energy in the body. Try running a mile or two if you do not currently.
Tea. I love tea. There are various kinds of tea that help with sleeping and sleepy-ness. I prefer Nighty Night by Traditional Medicinal, but if that is a bit out of your price range, any Chamomile will help you relax. I prefer Tazo or Twinings.
Of course there are things like sleeping pills, or medicine that has a side effect of drowsiness, but I prefer to use that only as a last resort.
Finally, I have learned that I need to close my computer and step away from it about an hour before I want to go to bed. Whatever I do after that does not matter too much, but I have been placing a focus on reading more. I read recently that the light from the computer screen effects ones eyes and stimulates the brain in ways that keep it awake past the point when the computer is actually open.
What do you do that helps you sleep better at night?