Experiencing lucid dreaming will only be possible if you have a good quality sleep!
Do not expect to have any success with lucid dreaming if you are struggling with irregular sleeping patterns and other sleeping issues.
If your overall goal is to get a better rest and to improve faster your quality of sleep, then let’s take a closer look at what can you do!
For you to enjoy your sleep and to fight back the irregular sleeping patterns will not only increase your chances of a lucid dream but will also make you enjoy a healthy body and mind!
Here are top 20 tips for better sleep, with ACTION STEPS that you can implement in your life right away!
Tip 1: Have a Sleeping Schedule
Start with setting a definite sleeping schedule.
The circadian rhythm of your body functions on a fixed loop and aligns itself with sunset and sunrise.
Through consistency with your waking and sleeping times, you can expect quality sleep for a long term!
Usually, the weekends are the period where you may have a hard time to follow your sleeping schedule.
But just have in mind that one study found our that people who had irregular sleeping patterns and went to bed late on the weekends reported poor sleep.
If you always wake up and go to sleep at a different time, you will always adjust to the new schedule and you will constantly feel tired.
HOW TO DO IT:
Simply try to make it your habit to wake up and go to bed at similar times every day and night.
Just put your alarm to remind you every time you should go to bed, likewise every morning when you should wake up!
You will notice that after a few weeks, you won’t even need to rely on your alarm.
Tip 2: Avoid Bright Light Before/During Sleep
It is astonishing how much the darkness will improve your sleep!
The naturally occurring hormone called melatonin is controlled by the light exposure as well as it helps to regulate your sleep-wake cycle.
Your brain produces more melatonin when it’s dark – making you feel sleepy, and less when it’s light which makes you more wakeful.
Your phone, tablet, TV, or computer emits an especially disruptive blue light. So definitely try to avoid these bright screens one to two hours before bedtime.
HOW TO DO IT:
There are a few options that will help you to sleep in complete darkness.
1. Reduce the impact by opting for devices with smaller screens. You can also turn down the brightness, or use the light-altering software!
2. You can protect your eyes and reduce eye fatigue with these glasses, which dim the distributive blue light. With them, you can still enjoy using your electronic devices without worrying about your good night rest!
3. Sleeping masks are a cheap and easy option for sleeping in complete darkness. That will increase the melatonin production, helping you sleep faster and better.
4. Get some dark blackout shade that covers all of your windows. That will be the most effective way to stop the light from the outside to disturb your sleep.
Tip 3: Relaxation Techniques for Better Sleep
You can prepare for sleep by practicing some mindful relaxation techniques before you go to bed.
By practicing relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, rhythmic exercise, and yoga, you not only calm your mind, but also you reduce the everyday stress, and you prepare the body and mind for a good night rest.
HOW TO DO IT:
1) Deep breathing
Step 1: Be sure you are sitting comfortably, with your back straight. You can also lay on your back.
Step 2: Close your eyes then start taking slow and deep breaths. Make every breath deeper than the previous one.
Step 3: The key is to breathe deeply from the abdomen, getting as much fresh air as possible in your lungs.
– When you breathe through your nose, your stomach should rise and the chest shouldn’t move too much.
Then, when you breathe out – through your mouth, again, your stomach should move as you exhale, but your chest should be more still.
Tip: Put one of your hand on your chest and the other on your stomach so you can feel the air coming in and out.
2) Progressive muscle relaxation
First, you orderly tense particular muscle groups in your body, such as your hips and buttocks.
After that, you release the tension and relax your muscles, for a few seconds, while being aware of how they feel.
So, start with your toes and tense every muscle, whereafter completely relax them. Proceed to work your way up from your toes to your head.
Basically, you should:
1. Get comfortable and for a few minutes and take some deep breaths
2. When you are ready, start to shift your focus on parts of your body such as:
– toes, thighs, hips, stomach, chest, back, neck, face etc.
3. Tense your muscles for about five seconds and then relax for 30 seconds, and repeat, or go on the next muscle group
4. Stay in this relaxed state, breathing deeply and slowly, while relaxing the different muscle groups
Consult with your doctor first if you have a history of muscle spasms, back problems, or other serious injuries that may be aggravated by tensing muscles.
3) Mindfulness meditation
Mindfulness meditation is the power of focusing on the present moment, rather than thinking and worrying for the future.
Easy step-by-step way to do it is:
- Find a quiet place where you won’t be interrupted or distracted
- Sit comfortably with straight back, either on the floor or on a chair
- You can focus on anything you want, such as:
– your breathing and the sensation of air flowing into your nostrils and out of your mouth
– your belly rising and falling
– a meaningful mantra that you repeat throughout the meditation
- Do not pay attention to the thoughts that are going through your mind
- Do it for at least 10 minutes. With time you can increase the minutes as much as you like
Don’t worry if you have distracting thoughts and don’t feel like you failed if you can’t concentrate!
We all have been there at the beginning.
Whenever your thoughts intrude during your relaxation session, don’t fight them, but gently turn your attention back to your point of focus.
Meditations that promote mindfulness have long been used to improve sleeping quality as well as to reduce stress, anxiety, depression, and other negative emotions!
Tip 4: Bedtime Rituals to Help You Relax
Develop procedures containing relaxing rituals before bedtime to make it possible for you to unwind before sleeping.
A few ideas, especially for a lucid dream journey, are:
- Read an article or a book (preferably about lucid dreams) with a soft light turned on
- Listen to some relaxing music, or even better – Binaural beats or White sound machine
- Do several easy yoga stretches for better sleep
You can really do anything that helps you to relax – simple preparations for the following day, crafts, a warm bath, etc.
Get some inspiration from:
Tip 5: Improve Your Sleep Environment
A peaceful routine before bedtime sends a very powerful signal to the brain that it is time for winding down and letting go of the stresses of the day.
There are cases when even the tiniest tweaks in your environment can mean a significant difference in the quality of your sleep.
A few proven sleep hacks are:
• Cool bedroom
Due to studies, sleeping in a cool place improves the frequency of REM sleep!
Keeping your bedroom cooler is a simple change, but getting fresh air which will circulate the air is very important for your sleeping and dreaming!
(TIP 7 covered more tips on how to keep your room cool, so keep reading!)
• Keep your room quiet
The sound is a strong force that has the ability to impact our health and rest patterns. This is regardless of whether your sensitivity to sound is high or low.
1) Keep the noise down which will ensure that you will get the rest that you need. You can always listen to some white noise – any type of constant, unchanging background noise.
White noise works masking the external sounds when trying to sleep, which will help you to relax and rest without interruption!
2) Another idea for keeping it quit is to use these soft foam earplugs!
Tip 6: Avoid Stimulants at Night
The primary culprits are soda drinks, chocolate, tea, and coffee.
All of these contain caffeine that will keep the mind and body alert for several hours. It will also prevent you from getting deep non-REM sleep.
Be aware of how these drinks and foods are having lots of caffeine as well as how they can cause sleep deprivation.
Once you cut them, you will notice the difference in your sleeping patterns!
HOW TO DO IT:
If you’re really struggling with sleep, you may consider cutting off consumption at 1-2 p.m. or eliminating altogether (at least for a period of time).
Tip 7: Set Your Bedroom Temperature
Bedroom and body temperature may also impact sleep quality.
As you might have experienced when on vacation or during summer, it can be hard to get a better night sleep when it is too warm.
Some studies show that increased bedroom and body temperature may decrease sleep quality and boost wakefulness.
About 70°F/20°C appears suitable for most people. Test different temperatures to find out which is most convenient for you.
HOW TO DO IT:
1) Opening a window (tiny bit if it is the winter, or keep it open for an hour before you go to sleep)
2) Using a quiet fan that won’t disturb your sleep, but will circulate the air and it will control the temperature of your bedroom
Tip 8: Exercise Regularly, But Not Before Bed
Exercise is considered one of the science-backed ways to enhance your health and sleep.
It can improve all aspects of sleep!
Exercise offers more benefits than other drugs for insomnia patients with serious issues – exercise reduced time to fall asleep by 55%, total night awake time by 30%, anxiety by 15% and increased total sleep time by 18%.
Although daily exercise is key for a good night’s sleep, performing it too late in the day may also cause problems falling asleep for some people.
HOW TO DO IT:
Do consistent exercises during the morning/early afternoon.
The more active you are, the more positive results you will notice on your sleep patterns. But even light exercise will improve sleep quality in a period of time.
For those of you that struggle to sleep at night, yoga is the ideal choice.
The practice of yoga evokes feelings of calmness, relaxation, and peace! Find out in our article about the yoga benefits for lucid dreaming and for better sleep!
Tip 9: Take a Relaxing Bath or Shower
A relaxing shower or bath is another way to sleep better.
A study showed that it can improve one’s overall sleep quality, as well as helps people fall asleep faster.
In another study, 90 minutes of a hot bath before bedtime improved the quality of sleep and helped the participants get a better amount of deep sleep.
If you do not like to take a bath during night time, bathing only your feet in hot water may help you improve sleep and relax.
HOW TO DO IT:
If you’re having trouble sleeping, it’s totally worth to try taking a bath!
You can even put some Epsom salts, a remedy for soothing tired, aching muscles.
Releasing this muscle tension is a key element in allowing the body to initiate the relaxation mode, which is inevitable for sleep!
Tip 10: Don’t Drink Any Liquids Before Bed
Excessive urination during night time is called nocturia in the field of medicine. It affects daytime energy and the sleep quality.
Drinking more liquids before bed may result in similar symptoms even if others are more sensitive than others.
Even if hydration is essential, it’s wise to reduce fluid intake during the late evening.
HOW TO DO IT:
It is important to not drink any fluids for 1 to 2 hours before bedtime.
You must also ensure to use the bathroom just before you go to bed that may reduce your chances to wake up in the middle of the night.
Tip 11: Get a Comfortable Bed, Mattress, and Pillow
If we take the fact that an average person sleeps for 8 hours a day, that means we will sleep for 229,961 hours in our lifetime or basically one-third of our life.
So, we would definitely prefer to spend it comfortably!
Investing in a good bed, mattress and pillows is something essential for our health!
The right mattress, pillow & sleeping conditions will lead to a good night’s sleep which is why you are here and reading this article!
A poorly chosen mattress and pillows or old ones can result not only in discomfort but actual problems with your health.
If you haven’t replaced your mattress or bedding for several years, this can be a very quick fix!
HOW TO DO IT:
Soft memory foam mattresses are a good choice for a conventional feel that embraces your body while you sleep and reduces pressure points for outstanding comfort.
The combination of memory foam and innerspring makes it feel great and it is suitable for the back, side, and stomach sleepers.
And a pair of hypoallergenic pillows like these ones are a perfect option and providers of a heavenly sleeping experience.
The fiberfill that puffs up gives cozy and relaxing sleep.
Tip 12: Don’t Eat Heavy Meals Late in the Evening
Heavy food keeps your digestive system working while you actually want to get your body nice and relaxed for better sleep.
What’s more, late-night eating may affect negatively both on your sleep and the natural release of growth hormone and melatonin – several studies have shown that people with the Night Eating Syndrome have lowered levels of melatonin.
HOW TO DO IT:
Try to take your meal at least 3/4 hours before going to bed. And try to include some CARBS in your dinner! Why…→
AN INTERESTING FACT:
So the effect on the hormone tryptophan is that it can make you feel tired.
Conclusion? A high-carb meal eaten a few hours before bedtime may help you fall asleep faster and improve sleep quality.
Get some easy and delicious high/carb dinner ideas from HERE!
Tip 13: Consider Some of These Supplements
Several supplements can induce relaxation and help you to sleep better, and to get the most of it, it is a good idea to combine a supplement with some of the other tips in this article!
They can indeed be very useful, however, they are not magic pills that will work after 1 tryout, especially for very serious sleep conditions and disorders.
If you decide to get some of these supplements, make sure to only one at a time. And give it a try at least for a week!
THE BEST SUPPLEMENTS FOR GOOD NIGHT SLEEP (backed up with scientific studies):
It is an extremely popular aid for falling asleep deeper, as well for the overall improvement of the sleep quality. Often used to treat insomnia, it may be one of the easiest ways to fall asleep faster!
It also makes our dreams more vivid and helps to remember them better, which is why it is used also for inducing lucid dreaming.
If you decide to try it out, take it 30–60 minutes before going to bed.
Take 250 mg, 30–60 minutes before bed.
Many people take the herbal supplement for relaxation and natural calm. Take 2 capsules once per day, preferably with a meal.
Backed by several studies, proving it can help you fall asleep easier and improve sleep quality.
The positive advantage is that studies have shown that Valerian Root has a common effect which is increased vivid dreams! Take 500 mg before bed.
Studies show that it can improve relaxation and enhance sleep quality! Take 200-250mg per day with food.
Tip 14: Reduce Long Daytime Naps
The well known “power naps” have been proven beneficial, however long or irregular napping during the day can affect your sleep negatively.
Sleeping in the daytime can confuse your internal body clock, meaning you may struggle to sleep at night!
A study found that naps of less than 30 min duration have several benefits, whereas longer naps are associated with a loss of productivity and possible negative effect on our health and sleep quality.
HOW TO DO IT:
It is very simple – if you have trouble sleeping at night just stop napping or shorten your naps.
Tip 15: Try To Sleep With Socks
Humans regulate our own body temperature and shifting blood flow from your core to our extremities cools down our body, working together with melatonin.
According to the National Sleep Foundation, warming your feet before you go to bed gives your brain a clear sleep signal that its bedtime.
(that’s why we mentioned earlier that bathing only your feet in hot water may help you improve sleep and relax)
Another proof is the research from a Swiss study, where they observed that warm feet promote the rapid onset of sleep.
HOW TO DO IT:
They may cost a bit more than cotton or artificial fiber socks, but if you have problems with sleeping and cold feet, they are well worth the extra bucks.
Make sure the socks you choose are not tight-fitting, which might constrict circulation and hinder proper warming of your feet.
TIP: Give your feet a pre-bedtime massage and add a natural circulatory booster such as capsaicin cream. This will increase the blood flow even more.
Tip 16: Sleeping Position
The way you sleep can play a big role in your overall health! Crazy, right?
Poor sleeping posture could potentially cause back and neck pain, fatigue, sleep apnea, muscle cramping, impaired circulation, headaches, etc.
The most important is to find the posture you feel most comfortable in.
You need to rest your body and spine without making any injuries. You also need to be sure that you are able to breathe properly.
We will go through the most common sleeping positions with quick pros/cons look.
PROS: Sleeping on your back is beneficial for the spine and neck health because the back is straight and not forced into any contortions.
By far the healthiest option for most people, however only 8% of people sleep on their backs.
CONS: Sleeping on your back can cause the tongue to block the breathing tube, making it a dangerous position for those who suffer from sleep apnea (a condition that causes periods of breathlessness)
Side Sleepers (body and legs relatively straight)
PROS: 15% of adults choose to sleep on their side, it is recommendable for pregnant women because it improves circulation to the heart.
It is less likely to snore in this posture cuz it keeps airways open. It’s also the best choice for those with sleep apnea.
CONS: A downside is that it can lead to wrinkles since half of your face pushes against the pillow.
Another thing is that sleeping on the left side can put pressure on the stomach and lungs (alternating sides often can help prevent organ strain)
Fetal Sleepers (on your side with an arched body and bended knees)
PROS: The most popular sleep position with 41% of adults choosing this option.
A loose, fetal position especially on your left side—is great, only if you’re pregnant.
That’s because it improves circulation in your body and in the fetus, and it prevents your uterus from pressing against your liver, which is on your right side. This pose is also good for snorers.
CONS: When curled up too tightly can restrict breathing. It can also leave you feeling a bit sore in the morning, especially if you have arthritis in your joints or back.
PROS: Pretty much the only good thing about this position is that reduce snoring ( and some cases of sleep apnea), it’s bad for nearly everything else. 7% of adults pick this pose
CONS: It can lead to back and neck pain since it flattens the natural curve of the spine.
Plus, stomach sleepers put pressure on their muscles and joints, possibly leading to numbness, tingling, aches, and irritated nerves.
Tip 17: Give Yourself Enough Time to Sleep
How many hours did you sleep last night?
If it is less than seven, then you’re between the many Americans who are sleep deprived.
Sleep deprivation symptoms include:
yawning, moodiness, fatigue, sleepiness, pain complain, irritability, forgetfulness, inability to concentrate.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), nearly one-third of U.S. workers get less than six hours of sleep a day.
Even though everyone needs a different amount of sleep to function normally, the recommended amount is 7 to 9 hours per night.
HOW TO DO IT:
Give yourself a chance of getting an adequate amount of sleep by:
• Go to bed earlier, preferably before midnight
• Make sleep a priority – even if that means you need to stop doing other things so you get the sleep you need
• You can also try to use the National Sleep Foundation Sleep Diary – this will allow you to track your sleep habits over a 1 or 2-week period, whereafter you can inference the results (and perhaps to bring them to your doctor).
• Try to implement any of the habits from this article (such as: have a sleep schedule, avoid stimulants at night, develop a relaxing bedtime routine, etc.)
Tip 18: Wash Your Face With Cold Water
Instead of waking you up it works to reset your nervous system in quite the scientific way.
It triggers an instinctive phenomenon called the Mammalian Dive Reflex, which lowers your heart rate and blood pressure!
After the splash of cold water, you will feel refreshed, relaxed, and ready to bed.
It basically indicates your body toward a relaxed hibernation mode.
HOW TO DO IT:
Just splash some cold water on your face before going to bed.
The cooler the water, the quicker the heart rate will slow!
You can also try to put an ice pack, a bag of frozen veggies, or something else out of the freezer, hold it to your forehead for a few seconds, and lean over to simulate a diving position.
If you tend to get dizzy or unstable, try to do it while you are sitting down.
Tip 19: Do Not Force It
Struggling to fall sleep will just lead you to frustration. If you are still awake after 20-30 minutes, rolling and twisting in bed, unable to go to sleep, don’t torture yourself.
WHAT TO DO:
You’ll eventually feel sleepy and you will be able to fall asleep easier.
Tip 20: Ask Yourself About Unusual Sleep Behaviors
How common is insomnia among adults?
Here are the numbers:
• 30 to 35% have brief symptoms of insomnia.
• 15 to 20% have a short-term insomnia disorder, which lasts less than three months.
• 10% have a chronic insomnia disorder, which occurs at least three times per week for at least three months
Every night millions of people in the U.S. struggle to fall asleep or stay asleep. For some, this is only a small problem. But for others, insomnia can become a severe, ongoing struggle.
Sleeping disorders (from sleep deprivation to sleep apnea, to REM sleep disorder) can harm you in a long turn, as well can prevent you from enjoying good health and quality sleep.
WHAT TO DO:
Chronic insomnia can have some serious negative impact on your on your sleep quality, health or daytime functioning. Some common symptoms of insomnia include:
• Inability to focus or concentrate
• Poor memory
• Mood disturbance
• Daytime sleepiness
• Low motivation or energy
• Increased errors or accidents
• Increasing your risk of depression
• High blood pressure
• Lower your quality of life
If you have some of these symptoms, along with serious problems of falling asleep, make an appointment for your doctor that will help you to improve your sleep for good.
All in all…
If you want to be a lucid dreamer, you NEED to have a restful and relaxing sleep.
The truth is that even healthy people occasionally have difficulty falling asleep.
Psychological relaxation techniques, hot baths, natural supplements or plant extracts, taking care of your melatonin levels (for ex. by using a sleeping mask), sleeping enough hours, adjusting your sleeping position, are all essential for a good sleep.
You can even get more creative and find other ways of improving your sleep, such as:
Basically, changing a tiny bit your habits will bring up some positive results in your resting pattern as well will improve your night’s sleep.