By Lily Dulberg, Contributing blogger
Daylight savings is in full swing, and now that we’re left with more light and less sleep we have to find efficient and effective ways to adjust. With less time to sleep in this time around, losing an hour can feel daunting. But don’t fret -- you’re gaining an hour of sunlight! We’ve got a few tips to help you ease into this shift with grace.
Practice makes perfect.
Set your internal clocks forward. That means waking up a little bit earlier, gradually each day to prime your body and mind for the new time change. It might seem trivial, but shifting back an entire hour can really mess with your sleep cycle. Since research shows that we, in fact, can’t make up for missed sleep by hitting snooze on the weekend, it’s important to catch your zzz’s throughout the week. Start by hitting the hay a tiny bit earlier each day in order to gradually adjust, so that you can wake up refreshed and ready for the day in no time!
Start a new routine.
Research shows that pairing habits together can help us cue and stick to them better. Start that new morning fitness routine and wake up a bit earlier. Maybe you’d like to incorporate a wind down at the end of the evening? If not, try to rework your routine so that it’s relaxing and optimal for rest. This might include a gratitude journaling practice or a guided meditation. Research from the University of Manchester shows that people who think thankful and positive thoughts before bed exhibit higher quality of sleep. If you have trouble drifting off, incorporating this small change into your life after you set the clock forward can serve as a centering practice.
Make your bedroom a haven for sleep.
Do you keep magazines, workout leggings, papers and knick-knacks in your bed? Try keeping your bedroom minimal to promote sound sleep with few distractions. Sleep expert, Ariana Huffington, recommends keeping the bedroom dark, cool and quiet for relaxation and deep sleep. If you live in a small apartment, we know how difficult this can be. Small changes can make a big difference; make your bed and clean your sheets regularly to create a relaxing and comfortable bedtime oasis. Reserving the bed for sleep and intimacy can totally change your mindset!
Ditch your tech.
You’ve heard it before -- light can wreak havoc on your sleep schedule. Blue light can suppress melatonin and in turn, disrupt your sleep cycle. Don’t fall victim to scrolling through Instagram before bed. There are so many benefits to placing the phone out of reach before bed. Try leaving your devices charging in another room (and opt for an old-school alarm clock). Shut down your screens about an hour or two before bedtime and opt for a book, or a pen and paper to record your thoughts!
Spring is the season of renewal and cleansing. It’s time to adjust to Daylight Savings Time, but it doesn’t have to be a downer. It’s a great time of year to press reset on any sleep habits that aren’t serving you. Think of it as spring cleaning for your sleep and mind. Work the change into your new schedule gradually, and it’s smooth sailing into the Spring season. A great night’s rest is just around the corner!