“Poor sleep habits, depression, stress, anxiety, lack of exercise, chronic illness, or certain medications are among the triggers that can make it difficult to fall asleep, tough to stay asleep, or cause you to wake up too early,” says Rob Carter III, PhD, MPH, in a release. Carter, a Colonel in the U.S. Army who has has academic appointments in emergency medicine at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, together with his wife Kirti Salwe Carter, FAIS, have written The Morning Mind: Use Your Brain to Master Your Day and Supercharge Your Life.
The Carters offer these 4 tips to help maximize the chance of beating sleepless nights.
- Listening to calming muscle triggers measurable relaxation responses like lowered anxiety, reduced blood pressure, and slower breathing. Cheerful sounds have a positive influence on feelings and attitudes. It’s a great sleep aid.
- Take a few soothing breaths, in and out. After a few gentle breaths, you notice how comfortable each muscle feels. Start with the muscles in your head, move down to your shoulders, and continue down towards your feet. Repeat for any spots that are still tense.
- Understand your individual sleep needs; be sure to get enough restful sleep. Inadequate sleep weakens our body’s defenses, diminishes mental health, and reduces your mood for sex. Taking control over your sleep routine improves overall well-being and outlook on life during this crisis.
- Energize, engage, and excite (E3) every cell in your body with ten minutes of meditation and 15-20 minutes light exercise. Physical activity and meditation produces positive changes in the brain, helps you feel calmer, and helps to center your mind away from life events that may prevent you from sleeping.