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  • Rebecca Szmidt

Catch Better ZZZ's with these Suggestions - Includes Plants too!

Happy Friday all! Hope everyone has been staying safe and warm this week amidst the blizzard if it has hit your location. I still can't believe we actually got a few inches of snow in Charleston, SC. Crazy and fun! Anyways, although it snowed here and my office was closed, I work in the IT realm and therefore, I got to still work all week, which is good, but I am so tired as usual. I think I am actually more exhausted from the added weather stress/anxiety too.

So because I have sleep on the brain, I thought I would share some tips that help me sleep better as well as share some interesting articles about sleep tips too.

I don’t know about you but I love sleep so much and I feel like it is so hard to get a good night sleep the older I get. Honestly, I have had sleep trouble since I graduated from undergrad and was 21. I have gotten better about managing it over the years, but I am not going to lie, it is still a struggle. Therefore, I am usually open to trying anything, except prescription medications – they make me nervous because of the side effects and I have seen them first hand for family and friends.

Seriously, I have tried different bedding (sheets, comforters, mattresses, etc.), temperatures, noise machines, oils, over the counter sleep aids, Melatonin, exercise, diet, no electronics, anxiety medications, etc. So when I saw this article, I figured “huh, I haven’t tried plants yet, so why not?” Plus, as mentioned above, I also thought I would share some things I have found to work for me over the years. Check out the plants in the article below:

Plants that Help You Sleep - Good news, some are hard to kill which is perfect for me!

What works for me:

  • Cooler temperatures – This for me is a must! I spend most of my life cold, but never fails I am always hot when trying to go to sleep. Typical, right? Ha. Anyways, for me the perfect temps are around 65-67 degrees Fahrenheit. We have a nest home thermostat that we use and just love it!

It is set to be certain temperatures when we are home, yep it can sense when you are home and not home, and specific times of day. Has really helped keep out power bill under control too.

  • White Noise Machine – Another must for me. This is more personal preference, but I can’t sleep when it is completely silent. Don’t know why, just doesn’t work for me. We have this white noise maker and when we travel we use free apps on our phones. We got ours as a wedding gift and I believe it is similar to this one from Bed Bath and Beyond.

  • Sleep Aids/Melatonin – I still have trouble turning my head off at night and not going to lie, I am likely emotionally dependent/addicted to sleep aids. Again, I have never tried the prescription ones, but my doctor recommend over the counter sleep aides for me as well as Melatonin. So I do take both (not together, only 1 at a time) and both seem to be enough to help me sleep and remain asleep. I tend to mix it up. I will take Melatonin for a while, and then switch to the generic of Unisom or Kirkland brand Sleep Aide (from Costco). My recommendation since I am not a doctor, I would ALWAYS ask your doctor before you ever take any medication.

  • Physical Activity/Exercise – I know we have all heard about this one to help, but I can confirm for me at least, it’s true. I usually sleep best if I have exercised that day. With this being said though, I always make sure I exercise at least 4-5 hours before I try to go to sleep. If I exercise before I try to go to bed, I will be up for hours!

  • Diet/Caffiene – Unfortunately, for me at least, this seems to be true as well. Ha ha. I have found that I can’t eat certain foods like sugary sweets including alcohol 4-5 hours before I try to sleep. Also, I only allow myself 1 cup coffee and 1 diet soda each day because caffeine impacts me. I will not sleep well and toss and turn all night.

Terrible! Some people, like my husband, are totally not affected by this, but I totally am. Just another reason I eat dessert first and early in the day. ;) Oh and I know some will or can drink de-caffeinated tea or warm milk prior to bed; I can’t. I will be up all night having to go to the restroom. LOL. I can’t really drink much at least an hour prior to trying to go to sleep.

  • Clear my Mind/De-Stress – This one is so important for me. The whole electronics before bed doesn’t bother me so much, but the stress related to things like work email keep me up. This is my main issue I feel. So, what can be done? Try to set boundaries about work or stress triggers at least an hour prior to bed. This works for me. However, please don’t think I have this mastered. I still have plenty of stress and therefore loss of sleep some. What I have learned though, is not to talk bills/finances, work, or other trigger topics before I try to whine down. It is a rule in my house and it has helped tremendously.

Anyways, that is my little bit of advice or tips that work for me these days. I am totally going to try the plants though. In addition to the sleep/relaxing benefit, they will also add to my decor; I definitely love dual purpose items. Don't you? ;) Feel free to send me your tips as well to try out.

Thanks in advance!

Check out some other recommendations and information for improved sleep hygiene below if interested:

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