I’ve always dreaded bedtime the way a little kid does, though probably for different reasons. I’m not trying to stay up late to eat another snack or watch a movie – I simply can never fall asleep. I used to be part of the “I’ll sleep when I’m dead” mentality, which was alright while I was in college, but my performance in life and at work is significantly poorer when I’m overtired.
A while ago I wrote about what it’s like having a brain that never shuts off – not because I’m, like, a philosophical thinker (just an over-thinker) – which contributes to my consistent sleeplessness. I’ve tried every trick in the book: melatonin, meditation, hypnosis, lavender eye pillows, Advil PM, milk, and prescription meds, to name a few.
One of my resolutions this year (more on those later) is to make more of a conscious effort to get better quality sleep. I’ve noticed that my activity during the day is just as crucial to my bedtime routine for getting a sufficient amount of sleep – exercise is the big key to this, and I’ll hopefully be doing more of this as I get ready for a major bike ride in June.
My nightly routine, which has tripled in length over the past year, has also helped with falling asleep. Until about a year ago, the only things I’d do to get ready for bed were taking a shower and brushing my teeth. I still do both of those things, but I also do a brief arm workout, use three different face creams, give myself a neck massage, put on a face mask, and take an alarming amount of vitamins. I think that consistency is key for stuff like this, and hopefully sticking to a routine will pay off.
What do you do when you have trouble sleeping?