Lessons I learned from the Better Sleep Challenge
Monday, February 03, 2020
As I am winding down the Better Sleep Challenge, I figured I would write down the things I learned over the past four weeks, just so I can go back to it later.
1 - Distractions (aka screens) in the bedroom are awful. They are an awful habit, and one that I did not completely break in the last month. I scaled them back, alot, but the temptation to pick up the phone to scroll endless news feeds and reddit posts is high when I wake up in the middle of the night. I am not sure I am going to banish my phone to another room, it is my backup alarm clock, and I have been trying out the Calm app to help me meditate and wind down before bed, it seems to be helping. That said, I need to work on not looking at the phone when waking up. Something to keep working on.
2 - Having a clean environment seems to help. I tidied up my nightstand and room, and it has helped me relax a great deal.
3 - Making my bed in the morning seems to help me sleep at night. The room is more orderly, and more relaxing when I come in. Turning down the bed 30 minutes before I hit the sack tells me the day is ending, which is good.
4 - Comfort is important. Two new pillows and a bottle of waterbed conditioner have really sorted out my comfort
5 - All of this goes out the window with a toddler that absolutely refuses to go to bed. My daughter doesn't sleep. This has been a known issue at home since she was an infant, and she's nearing 4 now. When my kid doesn't go to bed, I am either up way past when I should be, or I slink off to bed guilty that I am leaving my wife to hold the bag, which doesn't equal the best sleeping environment. I need to remember to not beat myself up over sleep consistency and schedules, as a great deal of it is out of control because of this.
I learned some from the Challenge, but it did not change my life. I think I will try to make the most of it and use what I HAVE learned going forward to try to improve.