Sleep Your Way to Success

Studies indicate a lack of sleep can be dangerous, causing significant mental impairment. If you’re having trouble falling asleep, or just want to make your sleep more peaceful, here are some helpful ideas that you can do in the comfort of your own room to help ensure a good night’s rest.

1. Let Lavender Lull You to Sleep. Known for its relaxation benefits, lavender is often used to aid sleep. Keep a dried lavender bouquet on your nightstand, dab some lavender oil on your neck before turning in, or burn a lavender-scented candle while you’re getting ready for bed. The aromatherapy will work wonders for your state of mind and your sleep habits.

2. What Relaxes You? Whether it’s a warm bath, soft music or a good book that helps you relax and unwind, make sure you give yourself that time to let go of the day and mentally get ready to fall asleep. Keep the lights low, the noise level down and invite sleep. Just as you have to warm up in the morning to get ready for the day, you have to wind down each evening.

3. Nighttime Yoga. Renowned yoga instructor Patricia Walden encourages using a series of yoga moves designed to quiet the mind after the stress of the day and to help you make the transition from active to quiet. Before going to bed each night, she suggests doing a combination of standing poses, forward bends and restorative poses to help you ease into night.

4. Pamper Yourself. Create a dreamy atmosphere in your bed with high-quality sheets and linens. Treat yourself to those 500-threadcount sheets and splurge on a good pillow. Indulge in that down comforter that feels like you’re sleeping under a cloud. Making sure you’re comfortable in bed is key to resting well.

5. Clear Your Mind. Learn to let go of the worries and stress of the day as soon as you get into bed. No working, sending e-mail or checking the Blackberry one last time. Try using visualization techniques that help you forget the trivial things and allow you to mentally escape. If you visualize yourself on a beautiful beach, you might just dream about it later!

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