You have spent another day scrolling through your Twitter feed and being consumed by the blue light from your laptop while working on a stressful project. When you hit your bed, you know you will keep lying there without any sleep. You can already hear the narrator in your mind say, “three hours later.”
It’s now three in the morning, and you are still flipping on your bed with no sign of sleep. You try to stay hopeful that you might find some rest, but you have been here more times than you can imagine and know the drill.
If you have resonated with this scenario, you are not alone. As per the Sleep Foundation, 50-70 million Americans report having sleep problems.
To help you deal with all your sleep woes is Dr. Andrew Huberman with his compelling and practical podcast episode #84 – The Sleep Toolkit. Dr. Huberman partners with Momentous and Eight Sleep to dive into neuroscience to offer a complete sleep toolkit that helps you find a bedtime routine catered specifically for you.
In this post, we will dive deeper into the insights from podcast episode #84 – The Sleep Toolkit – and figure out things to help you get the sleep of your dreams. Let’s get started.
Podcast Insights: Episode #84 – The Sleep Toolkit
1. Exposure to sunlight to maintain the circadian rhythm.
Circadian rhythm is the body’s internal clock that regulates our alertness and sleep hours. To maintain the proper balance in this clock, it is important to expose yourself to sunlight.
Therefore start by going out within the first hour of waking up to help your body understand its time to wake up. Then do it again right before sunset.
If you wake up before sunrise, you can use artificial light to keep yourself awake.
Now you don’t have to look directly at the sun or any bright light for that matter. With that being said, make sure you don’t wear a hat, sunglasses, or stand in the shade to reap the benefits.
2. Wake up and sleep at the same time daily.
According to the Huberman podcast, another good habit to add to your sleep toolkit is to start sleeping and waking up at the same time daily. When you push through those early night hours when you actually feel sleepy and finally go to bed extremely late, you are more likely to wake up in the middle of the night.
3. Avoid any form of caffeine.
Caffeine is big NO if you want to have sound sleep. Therefore, try to avoid drinking any form of caffeine within at least 8-10 hours of your bedtime. Some people also suggest avoiding it for 10-12 hours before, but Dr. Huberman feels you can make it without those extremes.
4. Avoid bright lights during the night.
At night, we only need a light that allows us to move around safely within the room. Therefore, avoid extremely bright lights between 10 pm to 4 am. Wearing eye covers or blue blockers can help, but dimming the light is essential to keep up with your circadian rhythm.
5. Limit daytime naps, and don’t be fooled by the alert hour before sleep.
Who doesn’t love a good afternoon nap, right?
Well, we all do. But limiting your daytime naps to less than 90 minutes is essential for a good night’s sleep.
You also need to learn to tackle the alert hour right before your natural bedtime. According to research, most people feel highly alert and energetic about one hour before sleep. So don’t freak out or indulge in it when that happens. It will pass.
Huberman Podcast’s episode #84 – the sleep toolkit – highlights some of the most effective and practical ways to recenter your sleep schedule. With science-backed, proven tips, this podcast might just be the answer to the sleep problems that millions of people in America face. We hope this sleep toolkit will help you get the sleep of your dreams.
If you have continuous sleep disruptions, it might be a sign of something deeper. To learn more, click here.
To continue learning about mental health, subscribe to Your Mental Health Pal.