In a previous article, we mentioned that getting enough sleep at night is the secret to good health, intense productivity, and overall happiness. Sleep deprivation doesn’t always result in success. Most of the time, it puts our health in danger.
When you want to solve your sleep issues, you can follow a sleep schedule or formula. Having a relaxing routine before bedtime can help you fall asleep naturally.
But, changing your habits may not be enough. According to research, our environment — what we see, hear, smell, feel, and ate in the bedroom — influence our sleep. Exposure to extremes may interrupt the process. Later on, you’ll find yourself staring at your ceiling, tossing, and turning on your bed.
If you want to beat sleep deprivation completely, turn your bedroom into a sanctuary where you can enjoy a long slumber. We asked the architects and interior designers from Superdraft about it and they recommend that you engage your five senses in your bedroom design. Here are the things you can do:
1. Set the stage for sleep through music and natural sounds
Curate your personal sleep-inducing playlist and listen to it before bedtime.
Play all the soft music and calming tunes that appeal to you for at least 45 minutes before you hit the sheets. Listen to the songs while doing light chores like reading a book or writing in your journal.
Don’t know the exact music to listen to? Try classical music. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven and Clair de Lune of Claude Debussy always put me to sleep. You can also listen to the slow songs of today’s artists.
Or, listen to sound around you.
When you don’t feel like playing your stereos in the bedroom tonight, tune into pink noise. The sound of a fan, trees rustling with the wind, and rain falling on your roof are some examples of pink noise that can put you to sleep. You can enjoy these natural sounds as they are or you can listen to a digital version of it on your phone, computer, or through a timed speaker.
2. Relax your eyes
Follow a calm color palette in the bedroom
Your bedroom must feel serene and cozy. To achieve that look, use cool colors like greys, blues, and greens. If you prefer warmer colors, I suggest using taupe, beige, and a pastel pink, yellow, or orange. Here are a few colors that I find calming to look at. These remind me of spring and fall:
Not sure which colors to use? Look for inspirations on Pinterest. You’ll find lots of inspiration there.
Keep the bedroom free from clutter
Creating a stylish bedroom isn’t enough. To make yours a complete haven, you must keep it clean and clutter-free. I encourage you to keep minimal stuff in the bedroom. Or, use a good storage to hide your things. More importantly, fix the bed in the morning so you’ll find it more inviting at night. The sight of a messy bed will only make you feel restless after a hard day’s work.
Turn off the screen
I personally find it hard to sleep at night when I’m using my phone or laptop. If you’re like me, I suggest switching off your computer and mobile devices. Store them in a spot near the bed but hard to reach when you’re laying on the bed. And, resist any temptation to turn them on.
Block the lights
It is important to have something that blocks external light from entering your bedroom. Consider hanging thick and heavy drapes or installing block-out blinds on your window. These deflect sunshine (when you sleep in the day) and the bright street lights (when you sleep at night).
Consider wearing an eye mask. But, only do it when you’re comfortable with it.
To help you doze off, consider having dimmable light switches. This device helps you control the intensity of your indoor lighting. Dimmed lights create a relaxing ambiance in the bedroom.
3. Indulge in the smell of sleep
Infuse your bedroom with soothing scents
Ever heard of essential oils? A few drops of these and you’ll be in dozing off to dreamland.
The best scents that can put you to sleep are lavender, vetiver, roman chamomile, ylang-ylang, bergamot, sandalwood, marjoram, jasmine, vanilla, and cedarwood. They all smell different, but they’re all mildly sedative. Choose a scent which appeals to you the most. (I like lavender so much). Put a few drops in a diffuser or sprinkle them on your bed, sheets, pillows, and pajamas.
Use clean and fresh beddings and pillowcases
Apart from lavender, I also like the smell of clean, fresh-smelling sheets. Thus, I regularly change my bedsheets and pillowcases. I wash it every week on my laundry day. If you’re like me, I encourage that you do the same. It’s hygienic and it will help you sleep better.
4. Surround yourself with things that are soft and warm to touch
Use cozy beddings
It’s always hard to sleep on a bad mattress. When yours give you pain, fatigue, or a runny nose, it’s time to change yours. Purchase the bed that right for you.
Then, keep your bed soft and snuggly. Consider layering your bed with soft beddings and a few pillows. Use natural and breathable fabrics like linen and cotton. These fabrics feel good against your skin. I recommend crochet blankets too for some texture.
Keep the room in optimal temperature
The optimal temperature inside the bedroom is from 18-21℃, according to the UK Sleep Council. If the temperature is below or above the said temperature, a person might find it hard to sleep.
Take a warm bath
Taking a warm bath or shower can help relax your mind and body. When you step out of the shower, your body temperature will drop, making you feel sleepy.
5. Drink something healthy and tasty
Drink warm tea or milk
Experts suggest avoiding highly-caffeinated drinks for at least ten hours before bedtime. Good thing there’s decaf tea! I personally like green tea because of its health benefits. Chamomile tea is a good alternative too. If you have kids at home, offer them a glass of warm milk to help them sleep.
When you create a sleep-friendly bedroom and practiced a few relaxing habits before bedtime, your mind and body will do their part. You will fall asleep. Then, the critically important physiological processes will happen. You will wake up feeling refreshed, energized, and ready to seize the day.