Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Stress and Strategies: Sleep

I recently admitted here that I'm not the greatest sleeper. The thing is, I love to sleep. I'm just not very good at it.

A complete eight hours is a rarity for me, and I'm probably the poster child for doing all the wrong things. I get too hot, too cold, too stiff. My blood sugar isn't perfect, so I end up going to the bathroom (too high) or needing a snack (too low). I can't fall back asleep, so I look at my phone. And check my work email, which tends to roll in at all hours due to my international client base. And then I start thinking about work. Or figure out how little time I have left to sleep, and get anxious about how tired I'll be if I don't get back to sleep soon. I know these are all bad habits, and a cycle I need to break.

I'm usually up by 5:45 am to get ready for work. I try to be in bed by 10 most nights. I've never been good at taking naps either, but sometimes the stars align on a weekend and I'll catch a little rest then. But I should get more sleep than I actually do.

What about you? How do you get enough sleep? Share your stress and strategies in the comments!


  1. I've really been struggling with this lately. No matter what time I go to bed, I automatically wake up 5 hrs later. My body is set to get just that amount of sleep and I have no idea why. It's not enough sleep and I'm struggling with how to "re-set" this pattern. Would love to hear any tips/advice.

  2. I'm also plagued with this. Cannot turn my head off. Some nights I lie awake till 5am and then finally fall asleep until the first child awakes at 6.30. And it's a vicious cycle. I've used melatonin a lot but my doc recently said I've prob built up an immunity to it. Ugh. He recommended I use an OTC sleep aid, just like once a week before a big work day. For me SUnday nights are usually the worst. I've tried all kinds of tactics - white noise, listening to meditation, hot bath before bed, wearing socks - some work sometimes, not always. I just accept that it is what it is and know that I'll always fall asleep .... eventually. But it's no fun.

  3. I've finally given up and started treating sleep like exercise (one other thing I hate doing). Has helped a lot, but it feels like Yet. One. More. Thing. To. Do. I found http://www.precisionnutrition.com/hacking-sleep helpful, especially the making the room as dark as possible (I now use http://amzn.com/B000CCI4YU/ which is dorky but effective).

  4. Josh, that is hardcore. I'm not sure I could do a face mask, since I tend to be claustrophobic, but there are some great tips in that article. Thanks!