Sleeping Pills #4 & #5 & #6
David Murray's book Reset has an excellent chapter on sleep and ways we can improve our sleeping habits. In my first post on this topic I shared Murray's first "sleeping pill" - Knowledge. In my second post I shared his next two suggestions - Discipline & Routine.
Here are his fourth, fifth, and sixth suggestions for how we can improve our sleep habits. I have discovered that each of these is very important in my own ability to get a good nights sleep.
A friend couldn't figure out why he was finding it difficult to sleep and was waking up frequently with bad dreams. Eventually he admitted he was watching movies just before trying to sleep! If we stimulate our brains (and body chemistry) with email, Facebook, films, TV news, computer games, SportsCenter, caffeine, or other energizers, we're asking for delayed and disturbed sleep---and we'll get it.
Noisy late-night teenagers or a wife who prefers to stay up late can make it difficult to establish earlier bedtimes and longer sleep times. A family conference may be necessary to explore ways to help one another make the compromises necessary to secure sufficient sleep for everybody. We have established a ten o'clock noise curfew for Sunday to Thursday nights. On Friday and Saturday, it's eleven o'clock.
If we just sit at our desks or in our cars all day and then expect to be tired enough to sleep, we can expect some protests from our bodies: "Hey, you haven't done anything with me yet!" In an experiment at Loughborough University, it was found that exercising between three and six hours before sleep improved sleep.
Which of these three "pills" do you need to consider?