In order to sleep better, and wake up early, you need to learn about the circadian rhythm - and why it’s important to wake up at a regular time - such as 5 am. To sleep better at night and then ultimately wake up early, we have a few helpful tips to get you started on your journey towards a more rested and enjoyable sleeping life. Hello everyone and welcome to thebestmind.net. In this article, we're going to learn about how to sleep better and wake up early.
Timed light exposure
Do you like working in the dark many people hide inside during the day you close the curtains you shut off the lights and you enjoy the quiet comfort of your dark room but every time you turn off the lights you're confusing your brain daytime exposure to light has a huge impact on your sleep cycle a 1993 study from the journal of the american geriatrics society found that timed light exposure significantly changes your sleep participants who experienced bright light during the day saw huge improvements in their sleep efficiency why because light is one of many ways that the brain governs your sleep cycle when the world is bright and sunny the brain feels awake and alert your brain knows that it's daytime so your energy and productivity remain high but sitting in darkness confuses your brain it doesn't know what time of day it is it loses track of your sleep cycle and that confusion leaves you feeling groggy and tired throughout the day so open the curtains in the morning turn on the lights during the day and keep your brain awake by saving the darkness for later.
Do you nap during the day napping seems like a great way to ruin your sleep cycle but that's not always true studies have shown that napping helps you sleep better and wake up earlier but only if you nap the right way many people nap whenever they feel tired well let's say you took a nap at four o'clock yesterday you came home after a stressful day of work and you fell right to sleep but today you got tired much earlier instead of napping at four you took a nap around noon are these naps going to help or hurt your sleep cycle your sleep cycle follows a biological pattern called a circadian rhythm the brain uses this rhythm to wake up and fall asleep at the same time every day that's why it's so important to keep your sleep cycle on a consistent schedule the more regular your sleep routine is the easier it will be to fall asleep if you nap at different times every day it's going to throw off your circadian rhythm according to a 2011 study in the journal behavioral neuroscience irregular naps damage sleep quality they also interfere with important cognitive processes like stored memories which happens during your sleep cycle if you're going to nap during the day try to nap at the same time each day your brain wakes and sleeps on a schedule so consistency is key
It's late in the afternoon and you're still working you need to finish a big project by tomorrow morning but your energy levels are fading fast so to keep yourself awake you decide to make a cup of coffee or down an energy drink you get a big burst of energy and you finish the last of your work but what happens when you try to fall asleep countless people use caffeine to counteract this afternoon slump after a busy morning your motivation starts to fade later in the day a boost of energy seems like a recipe for success but that second cup of coffee is destroying your sleep cycle the problem is caffeine stays in your system much longer than you think it gives you an energy boost that lasts a few hours but the actual caffeine remains in your bloodstream for six to eight hours after consumption so if you're sensitive to caffeine that number can climb even higher with caffeine in your bloodstream your sleep suffers significantly according to a 2013 study in the journal of clinical sleep medicine researchers found that caffeine damages your sleep more than six hours after consumption participants in this study experience significant sleep disruptions that includes trouble falling asleep difficulty staying asleep and grogginess after waking up so don't rely on caffeine to give you a boost of energy in the afternoon instead try a shorter yet effective alternative take a walk around your neighborhood or eat energy boosting snacks like almonds apples and bananas these healthier habits will give you the boost you're looking for without ruining your sleep cycle.
Unravel your stress
Do you find yourself working before bed do you fall asleep full of tension and anxiety stress has a major impact on sleep quality and quantity before you fall asleep your brain needs time to relax and settle down but stress stands in the way of your relaxation it fills your brain with worries and doubts which keep your brain tense and wired that's why stress relieving activities are so important before bed if you live a stressful lifestyle a relaxing nighttime routine could transform your sleep it can unravel your stress before bed and that way your brain can fall asleep smoothly and peacefully so what is a relaxing nighttime routine look like there are countless different ways to create your relaxing routine some people get lost in a good book others take a warm bath and listen to soothing music you can also practice deep breathing meditate or combine multiple of these activities together it doesn't really matter what you do as long as you're relaxed and consistent so find one or more activities that soothe your stress and use that activity like a ritual to unwind every night not only will your ritual help you relax it will consistently signal your brain that it's time to sleep.
Are you unhappy with your sleep schedule do you want to go to sleep and wake up earlier than you do right now there are countless benefits to waking up early from higher energy to greater concentration the brain performs at its best in the first half of the day anyone can take advantage of this morning boost but first you need to adjust your sleep cycle and that means waking up earlier and going to sleep earlier alright let's say you normally wake up at 10 or 11 am but you want to try waking up at 6 00 am the worst thing you can do is to switch your schedule all at once many people make this mistake they expect their brains to suddenly adapt to a big change in their sleep cycle but this big change comes back to bite them instead of feeling energetic they end up feeling drowsy and unproductive the brain enjoys consistency in your sleep cycle so use this consistency to your advantage don't dramatically change your sleep cycle in one night instead adjust your sleep cycle over time let's say tonight you just shift your sleep cycle by 30 minutes this small change is much easier on your body and it's a whole lot less exhausting so start with 30 minutes and then gradually move your schedule when 30 minutes feels comfortable try an hour and then 90 minutes and then two hours little by little you're giving your brain the opportunity to adjust alongside you you're not just waking up earlier you're teaching your brain to feel energized and comfortable in the mornings.
Avoid your bed
Do you do anything other than sleep in your bed many people check emails browse social media and watch tv in bed your mattress is comfortable your pillows are soft your sheets are silky and it's incredibly tempting to lay in bed throughout the day but this bad habit can impact your sleep cycle your brain creates mental associations between places and behaviors for example you're more likely to be productive sitting at your desk than sitting on your couch your brain associates your desk with work so sitting at your desk improves your mindset in the same way you want your brain to associate your bed with sleep if you build a strong mental association simply lying in bed will help you fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer each time you work browse or watch tv in bed you're weakening that mental association you're teaching your brain that your bed isn't just for sleeping so try to avoid your bed throughout the day save that feeling of warmth and comfort for the end of the day when you're ready for bed and if you can create a strong mental association the comfort of your bed will lull you into a deep restful sleep.
The vast majority of people have experienced delayed sleep latency in other words many of us have had trouble falling asleep at night sometimes we lay awake for hours begging our brains to fall asleep we check the clock over and over again and grow more frustrated by the minute the truth is tossing and turning isn't going to help you fall asleep if you've been lying in bed for 20 minutes stop trying get out of bed and find a relaxing activity to do instead if you've crafted a nighttime ritual re-engage with that routine spend 10 or 15 minutes focusing on something other than sleep during this time don't look at the clock don't worry about the sleep you're losing just enjoy 10 to 15 minutes of relaxation your brain is more likely to get tired because you're not stressed about falling asleep so the next time you can't sleep give this method a try once you get out of bed you may find yourself getting tired in no time.
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