In Europe, the upcoming Sunday, March 26th marks the beginning of the daylight saving time. I’ve got sleep tips for you for an easier transition.
Daylight Saving Time:
I’m Not Losing Sleep
We all look forward to the beginning of Spring – sun! birds! blooms! – but not so much to losing one hour of sleep. Are you drowsy for days to count during the transition? Read on!
As you know from my lighting hack article or my mudras for sleep piece, sleep is honoured and valued in la casa BEAUTYCALYPSE. I follow a simple routine and I learn new things along the way, and this is my 2017 daylight saving transitioning plan with 10 takeaways for you:
1 Know Your Zzz-Needs
Not everyone knows how much sleep they truly need to feel refreshed in the morning. Try to figure that out before the daylight saving time switch.[For the record: I need 7.5 hours of sleep per night, and I like to spend them curled up in my linen sheets like a big sleep taco!]
2 Don’t Commit Sleep Sins
1. Not having a sleep schedule
2. Sleeping until late on weekends
3. Going to bed with all your worries, work problems, arguments etc. unresolved
4. Getting too much entertainment before bedtime – blood-curling thriller books, action movies
5. Drinking alcohol before going to bed
6. Drinking coffee, black/green/white tea or any other caffeinated beverage in the afternoon (roughly: no caffeine after 3 pm)
7. Sleeping in a very warm bedroom
3 Have A Bedtime Routine
It’s easier to transition when you already have a routine in place. If you can’t unwind at night, try my mudra meditation practice for clarity and resolving fatigue. Or follow these tips:
1. Get exercise during the day – you sleep better after physical activity, and your sleep is mediocre at best after 10 hours of sitting down
2. Have a nice bedroom with comfy and beautiful bedding – so you’re actually looking forward to finally get there
3. Unplug: leave your smartphones and tablets outside or at least, turn them into flight mode
4. Avoid “blue light” after dark
5. Bedtime and waking time should be the same every day, in order for our body to properly function and fine-tune our hormones and our brains
Extra bit of advice: I find it difficult to maintain a healthy bedtime routine during darker months, or days with bad weather, or simply on busy days. So I have programmed my LED light system to signal when it’s time to finally turn off the devices and when it’s time to actually go to bed. You can read about it here.”
4 Check Your Mattress and Pillow Every Now and Then
Pillows and mattresses do have an expiry date. Unfortunately, we all can easily become accustomed to discomfort: back pain every morning or a stiff neck for the whole day? Are we doomed? No – it doesn’t have to be this way![Here’s the structure of the ethically produced natural latex mattresses with organic cotton cover by Allnatura]
Invest time into researching what’s good for you, and invest money into getting the best mattress and the best pillow in your budget. “Best” refers here in equal parts to tox-free features (say no to fire retardants!) and to the best height/ size/ support – for you.[Ethically produced pillows filled with latex flakes and organic cotton or kapok, Grüne Erde]
5 Be Prepared – And Patient
This one is so huge. Don’t be that kind of person who is always startled that it’s Christmas Day or surprised the current month is already over… since days – and then stresses out about it. You sort of had it coming, eh?
I’m exaggerating of course, but be honest: how often do you just ignore the daylight saving day and go about your week as usual? Don’t.
Be prepared and be patient. Go easy. The daylight saving weekend should be a stress-free one, if possible. No killer parties, no brunch debauchery. A SPA sounds good. A yoga class. Food should be light; green juice, leafy vegetables, warming and light veggie curries – reeeeeally easy on sugar, flour, butter, caffeine and alcohol.
6 Darkness Rules
In summer, I like to darken my bedroom not to be woken up by those overly enthusiastic sunrises at 5 am. Curtains rule! But I also generally just like the feeling of a dark and mysterious hiding place, a lair if you will… – but hey, a sleep mask will do, too.[Padded black velvet sleep mask by Kiss The Moon]
7 You Are What You Eat (Sleep Edition)
Dinner should never be too heavy on calories, or fibre, or spices. An active stomach can keep you up all night.
Extra bit of advice: eat sleep-promoting foods. Research shows that tryptophan, an amino acid our body needs for serotonin production, promotes healthy sleep. Plant-based tryptophan sources are: 1) edamame, 2) sesame seeds, 3) sunflower seeds, 4) oats, 5) chickpeas, 6) pure chocolate, 7) rice, 8) potatoes, 9) bananas. For you non-vegan eco-warriors: Parmeggiano, cheddar, salmon, eggs.
8 Stay Hydrated! But Not At Night
People who try to reach their water drinking goals in the afternoon will need toilet breaks at night. That simple! A little cup of tea should be okay, but a large mug of hot chocolate? Not so much!
9 Say No to Noise & Tech
Get all things tech as well as loud, distracting, noisy out of your bedroom.
What about your snoring significant other? Oh, I can’t recommend enough the 2016 book The 8-Hour Sleep Paradox: How We Are Sleeping Our Way to Fatigue, Disease and Unhappiness by Dr. Mark Burhenne – it was absolutely eye-opening for me.[Click on the image to read the book review]
Please do. It may not just save your sleep and relationship, it may save the snoring person’s life!
10 Next Level: Lucid Dreams
As you remember from my article five reasons to try lucid dreams, lucid dreams can solve problems. Aaaah! 😉
So, starting a few days before The Day, every night just before falling asleep, I will take a few deep breaths, relax and set the intention of making the most of my sleep and of having an easy transition into the daylight saving time. What this does for me: I’ll wake up and have a great idea to make the transition even better or I’ll just wake up more motivated to stick to my bedtime routine.
Extra bit of advice: I find it much easier to concentrate during a light facial massage or a hand massage, basically making the same treatment a 2-in-1 treat. I have just discovered a wonderful aromatherapeutic brand that is easy on the scent and thus PERFECT for my evening routine – and will review it soon.”
Dream a little dream…