Catch Better Zzzzzzs

Daylight savings was earlier this month, and some of us are still feeling the effects. While an extra hour of sunlight in the evening has been a welcome change from the dark winter months, losing an hour of sleep was the last thing we wanted or needed on the weekend. The good news is that our bodies will adjust, and the next time change come fall will give us an extra hour of sleep. We are counting down the days!

Sleep is incredibly important; this has never been up for debate. Since the dawn of time, sleep has been considered an absolute necessity in order for people to function at their highest possible level. Our human bodies require sleep to rest and recharge. It comes only second to eating and drinking. Most treatment plans for any bodily ailment include lots of rest. We crave sleep, whether we know it or now. 

However, now, more than ever, people are having an increasingly difficult time sleeping. The reason why is simple: we have way too much stimuli in our lives these days. This poses a major risk to our health, since sleep is required for our body to function properly. Lack of sleep causes stress, poor performance, a lack of focus, the inability to connect--all things that will significantly effect the quality of your life. 

Here are some things you can do to help yourself have a better sleep:

1). Invest in a Quality Bed: Size, frame, thread count, pillow fluff, mattress thickness and duvet weight all contribute to your quality of sleep. While these items are expensive to purchase up front, they will save you thousands of dollars in chiropractor bills and insomnia medication. Every person is different, so take your time to find the best sleep conditions for YOU. This is not something you can live with being just "okay." It needs to be perfect. 

2). Eliminate Bedroom Distractions: For some people, a messy bedroom feels cozy and like home. A perfectly clean and organized space makes them feel unsettled and anxious. For others, it is next to impossible to fall asleep in a messy room. Whichever kind of person you are, embrace it! Just make sure, either way, you take anything out of the room that is not necessary to a peaceful sleep. It could be your laptop or a stack of bills. If it distracts you, excites you or stresses you out, remove it from your safe haven. 

3). Turn Off Electronics: This is THE most important part of having a good sleep! Give yourself an electronics curfew. We recognize this is easier said than done, but it will make a massive difference in the quality of your sleep - trust us. Have you ever noticed that apps such as Facebook, Twitter, Email and Instagram use a lot of blue colors? This is because blue is a stimuli; it will keep you up and scrolling longer. Screens themselves also emit "blue light," which will also keep you wide awake and alert. Turn them off.

4). Set Yourself a Bedtime: Curfews aren't just for delinquent teenagers; they are also for adults who have issues getting a good nights sleep. Here's the deal: our bodies were designed long before the invention of clocks and alarms. There are triggers hardwired into our brains to help us fall asleep and wake up when necessary. We have what is called an "internal clock" that will get into a pattern and keep it. However, when we go to bed at wildly different times and wake up early one day, then sleep until noon the next, our internal clocks go haywire and can't help us. Get into the habit of going to sleep and waking up at the same time. It may be annoying an inconvenient at times, but it will help you so much in the long run. 

Most importantly, learn to listen to your body's needs. Some people genuinely only need five hours of sleep, but others need 9+. There is no shame in either as long as your habits are healthy. Furthermore, prioritize sleep! When you're up late working on a project and start to feel sleepy, embrace the impulse and go to bed. Similarly, when you wake up to the birds singing, don't stay in bed--get up! Learn to get in tune with your internal clock. 

Happy snoozing!

(Image Created With Canva)

Posted by Ken Richter on


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