Sleeping is a precious commodity as a mother. The questions a lot of mothers ask themselves is how do I get more sleep, how do I cope with the lack of sleep with a newborn or how do I simply have enough sleep to make it through the day. Sleeping is often neglected by mothers in favour of their family and the urgent aspects of life that continuously appear.
So what do you do?
There are loads of tools that can be used to improve your life but one of the tools that is least appreciated and can be super powerful for your life is sleep hacking.
So what is sleep hacking?
Sleep hacking is the art and techniques of sleeping less and increasing productivity. But be warned. Doing all of them at once could backfire and make you relapse. The best way approach this is to choose one technique and religiously stick to it for 2 weeks before incorporating the next one. So here they are:
Technique 1 – The “Sleep In” Factor
This technique isn’t cool or tricky but simply really effective. Have you ever woke up in the morning feeling amazing after eating a load of junk food and drinking a bottle of wine? Unlikely. Eating a big fatty meal at night and drinking alcohol gives you a fairly good feeling for the moment but it ruins your sleep and makes it hard to get up in the morning. It can also ruin your sleep for several days. So the basic sleep hack here is to cut it out as much as possible. Think and eat as healthily as possible. Long term you feel better, you won’t need as much sleep and will actually sleep better. One more trick for this hack. If it’s late and you feel like you want to eat something naughty… brush your teeth immediately. Watch how you feel once you have brushed your teeth. You may find that you don’t want anything to eat and start to feel ready for bed.
Technique 2 – 8 hours Is a Myth
There is nothing more powerful than a myth that everyone believes but isn’t true. Many people function perfectly well with less sleep with no ill effects. Ask yourself, how many hours do you actually need? Have you tried a week of less sleep? The sleep hack here is to first work out how much sleep you are currently getting and slowly reduce the amount of sleep so that you get used to it. For 3 days monitor your sleep cycle and record the hours that you sleep. Did you feel good at the end of those 3 days. If you did feel good, maybe you can hack a ½ hour a day for the next week. Give it a go! A ½ hour for 7 days gives you an extra 3.5 hours in a week. Thats enough time to read 50 Shades of Grey…
Technique 3 – Stress Reducers
Stress takes a massive toll on people’s lives. So how does that affect your sleep? It can sap your energy during the day and can keep you up at night. So get rid of it. Is it that easy? For most people no. But with the right tools and the right mindset you can definitely reduce the stress feeling. Have you ever looked at your watch and realised that you were late for something and then were filled with the feeling of stress. Looking at your watch didn’t cause your stress. Guess who did? … you did… So how do I fix this?
Step 1 – What specifically do you think is stressing you?
Step 2 – Ask yourself, can you control it or fix it? If the answer is NO… Then truthfully… there is nothing you can do… Know that stress is in your mind and the solution is to fix your self talk… If you can control the stress then move to Step 3.
Step 3 – Control the stress, this means to act. Most people stew in the problem for far too long. You need to think of what outcome you want, evaluate all the options, choose the best option for you and resolve to act on it. You should spend at the most 10% of your time on the problem and 90% on the solution. Once you decide on your solution don’t look back. You are a strong powerful woman who has the answer. Give that solution some time and watch how your sleep improves. Stress hacked and sleep hacked.
Technique 4 – Caffeine Cycling
When should you have caffeine? If you love coffee or tea and want to keep it in your life notice how it affects your body. Coffee is a stimulant that can take hours to get out of your system. If you sleep only at night, keep your coffee intake to morning time only. If you have a young child and are sleeping all over the place try this. If you are about to have a small 30 minute nap with your baby try hitting a coffee immediately before go to sleep and when you both wake up notice how you snap into your alert state. Try some experiments with this, everyone is different. You can really hack your sleep if you time you caffeine well.
Good luck There are loads more techniques that you can use. Give them a go. If it is good for you and your family – why not try it.
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