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7 Tips for a Better Night’s Sleep

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It’s a new year—and you’ve probably made a resolution or two around improving your health. Step up your fitness game with healthy habits to add years to your life: reduce your portion sizes, exercise more or work out your brain.

 

But the single best thing you can do for your health is to get more (and better!) sleep. It’s a challenge most Americans share. Mountain America Credit Union wants to help with a few sleep tips. Implement these strategies to wake up feeling refreshed and ready for anything life brings your way. Go you!

 

Yes, you’re an adult. Yes, you still need a sleep schedule.
Healthy adults need between seven and eight hours of sleep each night. Getting on a sleep schedule helps to regulate body function and sleep cycles. Go to bed and get up at roughly the same time every day, and limit any weekend time differences to one hour. If you consistently need more than eight hours of sleep to function, consider discussing it with your doctor. There may be something else going on.

 

What you eat, or don’t eat, matters.
We’ve all heard that we shouldn’t go to bed within a couple of hours after eating a large meal. Not only is it uncomfortable, it can also wreak havoc on digestion. Be wary of caffeine and nicotine as well. These stimulants can take hours to work their way through the system. Limit alcohol consumption, too. Although it may result in initial drowsiness, it can disrupt sleep later in the night.

 

Invest in your environment.
Sleep environments have a big impact on sleep quality—often more than we realize. Create a room that’s restful and peaceful with these three words in mind—cool, dark and quiet. Consider using black-out shades, earplugs, a fan or even a white noise machine to craft an environment that meets your needs.

 

Follow a bedtime routine.
Perform calming activities before bedtime to help promote better sleep. Try taking a bath, meditating or using aromatherapy oils. Reading a book or journaling is helpful, too, but be sure to use the real thing. Exposure to light-emitting screens before bed often makes falling asleep more challenging.

 

Get physical during the day.
Each day should include some physical activity. Make sure you’re not doing this too close to bedtime as exercise is a stimulant, too. If you can do your activity outside, all the better! Increase exposure to bright, natural light during the day to keep your body’s time clock (or circadian rhythm) healthy.

 

Stick with short, power naps.
Sleeping too much during the day can make it difficult to sleep at night. If you need to nap to get through the day, limit it to no more than 30 minutes. It’s also a good idea to avoid napping late in the day.

 

Master your worries.
Managing worry and stress is the key to good mental health. If you can’t resolve these personal concerns throughout the day, take a moment before bed to write down what’s on your mind. Setting these thoughts aside will help you to feel more calm and peaceful. Another strategy that may ease your mind is a little bit of organization. Start by setting priorities, delegating tasks and keeping a calendar.

 

If it’s just not working, get out of bed.
If you’re still tossing and turning 20 minutes after going to bed, it may be best to get up. Have a cup of tea, read, listen to music or do another relaxing activity until you begin to feel sleepy again. Believe it or not, lying in bed and watching the clock may increase anxiety about not falling asleep. Break the cycle by adjusting your plan.

 

Achieving restful sleep is a goal for all of us. If it doesn’t come naturally or if something in your life makes it difficult to get or stay asleep, make a conscious effort to adjust your daily habits. Test different strategies and find what works best for you.

 

If money worries are keeping you up at night, Mountain America Credit Union is here to guide you forward. Meet with one of our financial advisors to review your portfolio, strategize debt repayment plans and implement a budget. For a limited time, you can also get a 3% cash bonus with our balance transfer offer.* It may be just what you need to move toward a debt-free path. Interested? Apply online, in-person, over the phone or via our mobile app.

 


 

*Loans subject to credit approval. Membership required—based on eligibility.

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