Ways to Improve Sleep During a Pandemic
The stress of daily life has been increased exponentially by the current state of the world. One of the most frustrating effects of high stress is disrupted sleep patterns, because it creates a cycle of restlessness that leaves you feeling terrible during the day, increasing stress even more. In today’s blog, I’ll be listing a few of the ways that I’ve tried myself or have heard about to improve sleep in today’s stressful world.
My first and most strongly recommended tip is to ensure that you put your phone, laptop, or tablet down and far away from your bed at least an hour before you intend to sleep. Even when not in a global pandemic, reading social media feeds or the news can be a stress-inducing activity. As someone who likes to keep up to date on news and trends, it can be a bit of a struggle to keep consistent with this rule. There’s also a scientific reason that avoiding screens before bed can help you get to sleep. Screens output blue light, which tricks our bodies into thinking it’s still daytime, making it harder to sleep.
Another essential part of nighttime routines is meditation. Meditation is different for everyone, but my preferred method is yoga. Twenty to thirty minutes of meditation before bed, combined with breathing exercises, can lower your heart rate and induce your body to prepare for sleep. Yoga videos are readily available on Youtube, as well as many other types of guided meditation videos.
What you do during the day can also affect your sleep routine, so I make sure that I schedule at least thirty minutes of exercise outside every day. Being out and in the sun helps your circadian rhythms stay consistent, and physical exertion prevents you from having excess energy before bed. Exercise is also a great way to relieve stress, so you’re less likely to lie in bed, worrying. I prefer to get my workout first thing in the morning, not only because it helps me wake up but also because sleep researchers believe that exercising later in the day can keep you awake later.
Living through a world-spanning crisis like we’re all doing now will take a toll, but these strategies will be as much of a help to you as they’ve been to me. If you’re interested in hearing more of my thoughts on coronavirus, check out my blog on the effects of coronavirus on e-commerce.