How tired are you?
Do you find sleep to be restful – or do you wake up longing to head back to bed?
Are you getting the recharge you need to be ready to face the day?
For many people I know, they aren’t rested.
I am guilty. I was not going to bed until midnight or later. Reading one last chapter, sending that email, making lists of “to do” items for the days ahead. I was having a hard time falling asleep, and then, I would hit the pillow, and it felt like I bounced off of it to start the next day. I felt like a zombie. I cannot even blame my children as they are all old enough to sleep through the night, and need to be dragged out of bed in the morning.
I realized something had to change. I had a shorter temper, and zero tolerance for bullshit. I wasn’t able to focus, my memory was lacking, and I just did not feel like myself. I needed to rebuild my sleep habits, and I knew it.
I started doing a few things to help me get more rest – and I hope they will be helpful for you. Please remember I am not a doctor – and none of my advice is medical – but remember to utilize your healthcare provider when you are concerned about your health.
The obvious number one: Go to bed earlier. There are nights that I am “in bed” at 8:30. I am not sleeping at that time, but, I am doing my bedtime routine. I clean my face, change into nightclothes, and spend the next hour or so making my lists, sending the emails, and then, drinking a glass of water. I do have a TV in my room. I often watch a new show in bed so that I stay alert for it, and then, turn it off.
Number 2: I set alarms. A lot of them. Not a 5:00, 5:01, 5:02…but a series of alarms all labeled with what I should be doing at that time. This has kept my mornings in routine. I am leaving the house with my list complete, and ready to teach my students for the day without concern.
Number 3 – I say no to things that will interfere with my time. This one took some time to realize. I was running my self ragged with a to do list for others, and not remembering to do for myself. I make sure that saying yes to something for someone else doesn’t mean a no to myself. Sometimes it means saying no to staying up.
Number 4 – plan vacations. It is easier said than done. I make sure we have relaxing family, couples, and individual time off. I want to be sure we have a countdown to when we get to put our “lives on hold” and just be together. We sometimes do Disney, or a beach. Well- we usually do Disney cruise or Disney hotel even at the beach because 10 years ago we invested in the Disney vacation Club – and this way we have a “paid for” hotel for at least a week every year.
Number 5 – I do not stop myself from trying new things, or having things I love. If you say no to yourself, you only make yourself sad. This doesn’t mean I go hog wild doing everything – but, I do say yes to myself often, within reason. I also reach out to a few very close friends to talk through ideas I have. Having a good- trustworthy friend or two who doesn’t judge you- but will call out your bullshit is super important! Thanks Jaci!
Most importantly – do what works for you. Find a way to recharge. Go on a run, read a new book, go on a date, take a bath, drink the glass of wine, see the movie. Whatever way you recharge – make sure you put it on your to do list!