Keeping up with kids is no easy task. Waking up at 6 am, running around playing hide and seek, doing the laundry, cleaning the house, AND managing to make dinner sounds super fun, but by the time you sit down for a bite of your gourmet meal your about ready to fall face forward and use your mashed potatoes as a pillow. The fact of the matter is, being a mom is hard. Whether you’re a working mom or a stay-at-home mom, by the end of the day you’ve run out of juice. Unfortunately, there are no magic Wheaties or mystical vitamins that can give you that needed boost of energy, but there are ways to harness that energy on your own.
Every little bit of sleep you get is crucial to having more energy during the day. So learning how to get the most out of every bedtime, cat nap, or even day dream is essential as a mother. But don’t worry; the key to better sleep is just under your pillow. Here are the best steps to take to get more out of your sleep:
- 1. Keep a regular sleep schedule- set a regular bedtime and try to wake up at the same time every day. Getting in tune with your body’s natural sleep-wake cycle is one of the best ways to achieve quality sleep.
- 2. Take in the sunshine. During the day it is best to remove your sunglasses, open the blinds, and let in the light. Being exposed to light helps reduce your body’s secretion of melatonin (the hormone that makes you drowsy) which regulates your sleep-wake cycle.
- 3. Turn off the lights. Anytime you sleep you should have as little light exposure as possible. This increases your “drowsy hormone” production and helps you sleep more soundly. Try to turn any electronic devices off around you or turnoff their back lighting. Avoid reading with devices like iPad’s before bed, and instead try reading a hardcover book with a mildly lit bedside lamp.
- 4. Don’t toss and turn. If your bed makes you achy or you find yourself tossing in your sleep a lot even after testing all these tips, it might be time to get a new mattress. A comfy bed is the first step to getting a good night’s sleep and a bed that makes you achy probably needs to go. Investing in a more plush bed like the ComforPedic iQ mattress may seriously improve your sleep.
- 5. If you have an infant or a child you have to wake up for, use a flashlight. Try to use as little light as possible so you can still see when you’re taking care of your little one, but so it’s dark enough that you can ease back into sleep.
- 6. Keep it cold. Keep your room’s temperature around 65 degrees Fahrenheit so as not to interfere with your quality sleep. If your room is the right temperature but your bed still seems too hot, invest in a new mattress. Something with Aircool memory foam like the Beautyrest Black mattress will help you get the comfortable sleep you need.
- 7. Eat right. There may not be any magical Wheaties out there but eating well and eating at the right time of the day can help you to sleep deeply. Avoiding alcohol and big meals at least 2 hours before bedtime is the easiest way to get the most out of your sleep.
- 8. Exercise. Pick up your little tyke and start squatting with him. Whether you use your kid as a dumbbell or you go for a quick 20 minute jog, exercising regularly and consistently will improve your sleep tremendously. You can even break up your workout into five minutes here, 10 minutes there, and still get the benefits. Try a brisk walk, a bicycle ride, or even gardening or housework, just make sure you get enough stimulation during the day so you can get the best sleep at night.
- 9. Stay out of your head. Do some breathing exercises, do some light reading, and try to relax as much as possible.
Whatever steps you choose, make sure they are unique to your needs. There are no set ways that guarantee a better night’s sleep. Experimenting with all of these tips and finding what works for you is the best way to get the most out of your sleep, and as a mother, you know how valuable even an extra minute of good sleep can do.
So change your schedule, turn the lights down, and share this with your friends. Whether you pin it, tweet it, share on Google Plus or update your Facebook status give yourself a chance to win $500 off a new mattress and enhance your sleep. Whatever you do, sleep wisely.