Yawn…not a morning person? Not everyone wakes up rearing to go, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. The night prior you make a promise to yourself to not stay up late reading, scrolling your phone, or watching just one more episode of your over-binged Netflix show – however when the light filters through your curtains, and you find yourself continually reaching for that snooze button, you question why again you failed on your promise to hit the hay at a respectable time. We have been there, and its never easy!
Maybe you want to spend extra time organising your children’s lunch boxes and school bags, maybe you find yourself rushing to de-ice your car and subsequently end up late for work (again), or maybe you just yearn for that extra free time to relax with a hot beverage before a hectic day commences. Whichever your circumstances, going to bed 2 hours, 1 hour, or even 30 minutes before your usual bedtime slot will provide you with a stronger passion to rise and shine earlier, whilst benefitting your body in a positive way – a win-win situation right? Being late, feeling sluggish before 9am, and drowning your sorrows in copious amounts of caffeine is the thing of the past with our helpful tips. To give that extra boost of motivation, let’s divulge into the reasons why you should be switching that alarm to an earlier time.
Benefits Of An Early Night
‘You need to get your beauty sleep’ – I’m sure you have heard this statement muttered about many times before. But it is true, sleeping for longer throughout the night, and getting the recommended 7 hours or so of shut eye, helps to keep the body and mind in check. For those who are questioning whether an early night is worth it, we have the perfect reasons why you should – your body will thank you for it!
- Improved sleep quality – You may or may not be aware that sleep has different cycles – REM known as rapid eye movement, and non-REM, non-rapid eye movement – just as it says on the tin here. Now, non-REM is the stage where deep sleep occurs and this results in the body going through restoration, enabling a whole host of added benefits. This usually happens earlier in the night, so hitting the hay whilst the night is still young will provide your body with more of an opportunity to rest and restore.
- Reduced risk of disease – Sticking with this restorative theme, on the flip side of this, an insufficient amount of sleep can lead to heart disease, diabetes and even mental health conditions like depression. Not only this, but your immune system can be impacted with a lower amount of sleep – so if you want to boost your immune system to fight the winter viruses like the common cold and flu, get an early night and blow those nasty germs away.
- Improved memory – As we get older, we may start to forget certain snippets of information – have you ever walked into a room and forgot why you even wondered in there? (we have). Well did you know that sleeping early and for longer can actually improve your memory as well! There are studies to back this up, with proper rest known to help the brain store and sort information, adding new knowledge into your long-term memory. In addition, it also helps to improve your short-term working memory as well – best of both worlds here.
- Better mood – Feeling cranky? Want to banish the Winter blues? Putting your alarm on for an earlier time and in return getting up at the crack of dawn exposes you to more sunlight due to longer day lengths. This increases the brain’s release of mood boosting hormones like serotonin, and subsequently helps to overcome unhappiness and irritability.
- More energy – We all yearn for more energy throughout the day - walking around like zombies as we take on our daily tasks. Well…just like sleep is great for your brain, it is also fantastic for many bodily functions like muscle growth, protein synthesis and tissue repair. This general health improvement energises your body and relieves the exhaustion that you tend to feel with lack of sleep.
How To Get An Early Night
So, it is evident that the benefits of switching off from the day and gaining a higher amount of shut eye has an endless array of benefits for both the body and mind. However, this is easier said than done – how do you actually bring this sleepy want into fruition? Well, you’re in luck! Not only do we provide Nootropic supplements like our The Relax Capsules that can help you rest up, but we have also outlined ways you can switch up your habits and focus your attention on getting that adequate amount of sleep per night - crawling into your sheets before the night is up. The steps are easy, trust us!
- Maintain a consistent sleep schedule – The first key to going to bed earlier is through creating a regular sleep pattern. This means trying to go to bed and wake up from this haze at the same time each day – yes even on weekends! There is evidence that suggests that structured sleep helps sleepers go to bed and wake up earlier, with less variation in sleep duration each night.
- Develop an evening routine – Sticking with the consistent sleep schedule, how you organise you’re evening and regular activities you implement here can also have an impact. Routines in general are great for altering human behaviour, and will provide you with more of natural drive to sleep earlier. It will just become automatic, and not a hinderance. There are a few ways you can wind down for bed and these following ones will help you prepare, as long as you drop these when it hits your bedtime curfew:
- Take a warm bath or shower
- Read a book
- Write a to-do list for tomorrow
- Listen to music
- Try Mindful meditation
Minimise blue light exposure before bed – phones, laptops, watching the telly, we all incorporate these into our pre-bed regime. Well…exposure to blue light technology can actually inhibit sleep hormones and make it very difficult to doze off. As humans, we are particularly sensitive to high-energy light at night, so the best decision for your sleeping habits is to limit your screen time before bed – switch off your TV and hide your phone away from arm’s length. It’s going to be hard, but it will be worth it in the morning when you feel refreshed and ready to take on everything and anything!
Create a better bedroom environment – on top of bidding farewell to your trusty devices, it is recommended that you keep your bedroom quiet, dark and cool. Our bodies are highly dependent on temperature when we sleep and an environment which is between 19 – 21 degrees will help to facilitate the transition to hit the hay – ensuring the perfect sleeping conditions. With noise, many of us can get startled by even the smallest of frequencies, so it is best here to make your bedroom as quiet as possible. However, if you are someone that cannot sleep without some form of noise, we suggest using a fan or adding a white noise device to drown out background fuss.
- Exercise during the day – There is interesting research that suggests that exercise can also influence the timing of sleep cycles. Participating in a high-intensity workout session before bed can spike adrenaline and make you more awake than you were before the gym. Instead exercise daily either with a morning workout to get you prepped for the day or in the afternoon – this will make you more sleeping at night and more inclined to get that much-needed shut eye and at a desired time.
So…rise and shine, there are so many useful ways to switch up your pre-bed habits and instead get into the grind of going to bed at an earlier and beneficial time. Life is busy, we all know this, but if you can plan ahead and be strict with yourself, you’ll soon get into that desired routine. Jump into a brand new morning with extra hours to accomplish tasks and spend time with your loved ones, whilst gaining more sun exposure and happiness. So set your alarm clock, plan your evening routines…and climb into bed. Sleep has never been sweeter.