Sleep like a baby

With the changing seasons, does anyone else feel like their sleeping pattern and quality changes too? It's particularly the summer to autumn transition I find difficult (and I am miserable without enough sleep!)

Your environment is a massive part of sleeping well, there's a lot you can do to make sure your bedroom is set up to ensure the perfect night sleep, every night.

Peace and quiet

An obvious starting point but it's really important that your bedroom is a tranquil, quiet space. If it isn't, whether it's noise from outside or a snoring partner, whatever it may be, try to minimise interfering sounds with either earplugs or some white noise. Personally, I prefer earplugs if I need to block out sound, they take some getting used to but I find them to work really well. I know some people hate the feeling of them though, or don't like the idea of not being able to hear in an emergency (though, I can still hear a little through them and will hear my alarm going off) so this is when white noise can work really well. Something like the sound of rain on a window or the ocean or even the murmur of a fan will help drown out noises that would otherwise prevent sleep.

In the dark

Again, simple enough but don't underestimate the power of the dark for helping you sleep. If you're one to have your blinds open to help wake you up in the morning? Stop doing that! Any light, even from distant streetlights or a flashing toothbrush on charge will negatively influence your sleep. Melatonin is controlled by light, you realise more it when it's dark - making you sleepy, and less when it's light. So even a little bit of light can interfere with your bodies cycle of melatonin production. Get that TV out (or off a few hours before), use heavy blinds or curtains, and use dim warm light bulbs in any lamps rather than anything too white or bright. But equally important in this is making sure your exposed to enough natural light during the day so if you work in an artificially lit office, ensure you go for a walk at lunch time if you're likely to miss out on daylight before and after work.

Keep it cool

As your body gets ready for sleep you body temperature drops so a cooler room is the ideal facilitator. The hotter you are, the more likely you are to have disrupted sleep. The optimum temperature is about 18.5 degrees, where you'll neither shiver nor sweat and your body will reach it's sleeping temperature quicker so you'll fall asleep faster. This is why if you eat or exercise too close to bed time you'll struggle to fall asleep as that raises your body temperature. Another great way to get your body temperature down to sleep is having a bath, a bath about half an hour before you want to sleep is perfect as at that point your body temperature reduces to it's optimum sleep temperature.

All in the aroma

Many are skeptical about it but scents like lavender, jasmine, chamomile, and many others can have an amazing influence on your sleep. Lavender in particular has chemicals that are rapidly absorbed by your bloodstream to lower heart rate and reduce anxiety. My grandmother has awful trouble sleeping so I bought her the This Works Deep Sleep Rollerball and she can't be without it now, even my grandad has taken to using it. I've also mentioned that Aesop hand cream approximately 738202 times as being part of my bedtime beauty routine but I now find I associate the smell with sleep so it really helps me drift off - plus my trusty little pouch of dried lavender that I love to give a squeeze to release it's aroma if I'm really struggling.

Make it minimalist

This isn't necessarily about the design of your space but also keeping your room as tidy and clutter free as possible. It's true what they say, tidy space tidy mind, so if you've got messy clothe or papers everywhere, things covering every surface, that's not going to help you. You don't want to be clearing your bed of stuff every night then stressing about everything all over the floor come morning. Be sure to hang or fold your clothes and declutter your surfaces, well before bed time so it's not going to unrelax you.

Plant therapy

Not only do our green friends look fab, many have relaxing and purifying benefits too. Plants like Lavender and Jasmine work really well for their scents, while others like the Peace Lily, Snake Plants, English Ivy, Golden Pothos and looads more are fantastic at purifying the air, filtering out toxins, airborne moulds or allergens in your room to help you breath easily.  Many of these are more than happy in dim light and are super easy to look after too, so perfect for a bed side table!

Do you ever struggle to sleep or do you find you always sleep like a baby? If you have any other tips share them in the comments!

Sweet dreams.

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