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Not Sleeping Well? 7 Tips For Getting Better Sleep

These 7 simple tips (and one free printable) will help you improve the sleep habits that are so important for your health.

Jill Nystul • May 14, 2022

Jill Nystul • December 20, 2023

Jill Nystul • December 20, 2023

Jill Nystul • December 20, 2023

There are certain things that we humans need in order to function properly, and sleep is one of them. Sleep affects our mental and physical health in a variety of very real ways!

But if you want to perform at your best, not just any sleep will do! Truly good sleep needs to meet two requirements: it has to last a certain amount of time, and it needs to be of a sufficiently high quality. But unfortunately, there are about a thousand factors that can make both of those requirements hard to reach!

In order to make it easier, today I’ll be offering up 7 helpful tips for getting better sleep. Whether you have a lot of room for improvement when it comes to sleep, or you just need a bit of a tune-up, these tips will help you get back on track!

7 Tips That Will Help You Get Better Sleep

1. Start Keeping Track

You can’t improve your spending habits if you don’t know where your money is going, and you can’t improve your sleep habits if you don’t know when or how long you’re sleeping! So in order to get better sleep, keeping track of your sleep patterns is a great place to start.

For gadget lovers, there are several wearable gadgets on the market that will track your sleep for you. Several Fitbit models have built-in sleep trackers, as does the Apple Watch.

And for those who prefer the pen-and-paper approach, I put together a simple printable sleep tracker for you. If you use it regularly, a tracker like this can help you identify patterns in your sleep routine and figure out where there might be room for improvement. Use the button in the box below to download the sleep tracker.

2. Fall Asleep Faster

Some people have no trouble staying asleep—it’s falling asleep that they struggle with. If that sounds like you, there are plenty of simple things you can do before bedtime to unwind, relax, and fall asleep faster. Get 9 helpful tips for falling asleep faster at the link below.

3. Wear Something Comfy

Many factors can affect the quality of your sleep, including what you wear to bed! I’ve always been a sweats and t-shirt kind of gal, but I recently invested in my first nice pair of pajamas. I can’t believe how comfortable they are, and I know I’ve been getting better sleep because of them!

On the other hand, there’s also some evidence to suggest that sleeping naked can lead to better sleep. So I guess the takeaway is that it doesn’t matter exactly what you wear to bed, as long as you feel as comfortable as possible! :-)

4. Get More Exercise

According to a 2018 review, getting more exercise during the day can improve your quality of sleep, even in those with insomnia. So if you haven’t been sleeping well, try fitting some more exercise into your routine!

(Keep in mind that exercising close to bedtime can make it hard for some people to fall asleep, so try to schedule your exercise early if possible.)

5. Lights Out

The blue light emitted by screens can interfere with your body’s natural production of melatonin and lead to poor sleep. If you’re having trouble falling asleep, avoid using your phone or tablet right before bed.

And it’s not just blue light that can keep you awake! If those LED indicator lights on your bedroom electronics are keeping you awake, check out the post below. It’s packed with ideas for covering up LEDs so they aren’t as bothersome!

6. Limit Caffeine

Caffeine can linger in your system for hours after you finished your drink and interfere with your sleep! Try to limit your caffeine consumption to the morning hours and early afternoon hours. Shoot for 2:00 pm as a good stopping point.

7. Take A Nap

If you’re not getting enough sleep at night, you’re running a sleep deficit. Taking a nap is actually a pretty good option for earning back some of that sleep! So if you feel like you need a nap, go ahead and take one! (As long as it’s still early enough in the day, or you run the risk of making it hard to fall asleep later.)