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  • Writer's pictureSleep Well Blog

7 tips for a great sleep routine

Updated: Mar 15

With the time change and World Sleep Day here, it is a great time to think about your sleep routine. Here are seven tips for you:

  1. Consistency is critical: Make sure to set a consistent bedtime that provides you with ample sleep opportunity to obtain your 7-9 hours of recommended sleep. Ensure that you consider sustainability by factoring in those things in your lifestyle that cannot be changed.

  2. Time management: Consider what you do during the day. Have you blocked off time for rest and recuperation? What are those lifestyle choices that you make that can be changed so that you can be not only productive but also well rested.

  3. Chronotype: Consider your sleep patterns, those relating to your "feeling best" times of day. Work with your chronotype as much as your lifestyle allows. Doing so will help ensure that your sleep is optimal. However, when your chronotype does not align with your lifestyle or work schedule, then certain changes must be made. Either you align with your chronotype or with another aspect of your life, such as your work schedule, while keeping consistency top of mind. Otherwise, your sleep routine will be disjointed, and you will experience social jet leg. Unfortunately, the way in which society is set up, night owls tend to be in a position in which they must compromise their sleep in order to work. Shift workers are in a similar position. If changing jobs or schedules is not feasible or possible, then learning how to minimise social jet lag will be critical. Learning how to use light to advance your bedtime and how to use good sleep hygiene will be needed. Other factors like timing of food intake, exercise, and social life will also be needed to be taken into consideration.

  4. Lights off: One's circadian rhythm is entrained to the sun and the 24-hour day, with its being longer or shorter, depending on the individual. This influences your morningness or eveningness, in terms of chronotype. Artificial light can impact your sleep-wake cycle and circadian rhythm, by extending what is perceived as daytime, and can delay when melatonin is released, a key hormone that signals that it is time for you to rest. Make sure to dim lights in the evening, particularly if you are a night owl who must advance your bedtime in order to wake up in the morning. Although more research needs to be done, a particular wavelength of red light may be used to transition to sleep.

  5. Listen to your entertainment: Rather than watching TV, scrolling through social media, or binging on a streaming platform like Netflix, Paramount+, Disney+, Tubi, and others, listen to your entertainment. Whether that be music, audiobooks, podcasts, or conversation, shift away from media that will expose you to light, particularly LED screens that emit blue light.

  6. Cool down: Core body temperature drops as your body readies itself for sleep. Make sure that your room is cool (18.3 degrees Celsius/ 65 degrees Fahrenheit) to promote rest and slumber. Warm showers an hour or so before bed has been shown to improve sleep by cooling your core body temperature.

  7. Eat earlier: The timing of food intake can influence your sleep-wake cycle as well as sleep quality, particularly if you experience acid reflux. Eating your last meal of the day at least 3 hours before bedtime is recommended. What you eat also influences your sleep, so focus on a eating a healthy diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, particularly leafy greens, nuts, and fish.

7 tips for your sleep routine

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