Habits are built through routine and repetition. If we incorporate healthy choices into the fabric of our days, forging Habits of Health becomes much easier. If every day we are waking up to do yoga before work and taking walks at lunch and reaching for our water bottles throughout the day, we create a momentum where more and more of the choices that help us thrive become automatic.
Unfortunately, many of us have seen our routines radically disrupted, and I want to check in on a Habit of Health that can easily slip away from you: your Habits of Healthy Sleep.
Here are some questions you should be thinking about for your sleep:
- Are you keeping a regular bedtime schedule?
- Do you fall asleep with ease?
- Do you wake up feeling rested?
- Do you feel energized throughout the day?
The challenges of the coronavirus may be making it difficult for you to keep a regular sleep routine. I can empathize with how you’re feeling, and you are not alone. Because sleep is so critical to optimal health, however, we should pay careful attention to the choices we are making, even if we are in quarantine. When we are rested, our immune systems are stronger, we respond to stress more effectively, we are better able to manage our appetites, and our decisionmaking overall is improved.
Sleep is important, especially now.
If you have found yourself slipping away from your sleep routine, here’s how to get it back on track:
- Set a digital sunset. One hour before your bedtime, turn off your devices, dim the lights, and start to get ready for bed. Take a hot bath and read a few pages of a book to help ease your mind and body into sleep.
- Meditate. A few minutes of mindfulness meditation scattered throughout your day can help you to reduce your stress and calm your mind, which will make it easier to keep your bedtime.
- Limit your alcohol and caffeine intake. If you drink either of these near your bedtime, you are likely to find it difficult to fall asleep, and the sleep you do get is unlikely to be restful. Try not to drink coffee in the afternoon, and avoid drinking alcohol right before bed.
- Stay active. Last week, I shared several tips on how to stay in motion even if you are stuck indoors. Keeping your activity level up is a critical part of preparing your body for sleep, so if you find yourself not sleeping well, check in on your Habits of Healthy Motion as well.
- Talk to your coach. These are unusual times, and if you need support or guidance, don’t be afraid to reach out to your coach or to our community at large. We’re here to help.
How are your Habits of Healthy Sleep fairing? Did you recently try something new that improved your sleep habits? Share your story! Your insight could help someone else live a better, healthier life.