It might be the cardinal rule of good sleep hygiene: The bed is for sleep and sex only.
There’s still much we don’t know about the science of sleep, but experts are resoundingly supportive of these two s-words. (Some even have their own riffs on the adage, like this gem from Dr. M. Safwan Badr, M.D., president of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine: “I say the bed is for two things that begin with the letter S, and struggling and suffering are not among them.”)
The idea has become so widely-spread that now even Lauren Conrad knows it to be true. She told Allure magazine that she’s trying to get over her habit of doing work from her bed, and wanted her bedroom to be very calm. “Your bed is for sleep and sex,” she said. Bingo!
Still, many of us are guilty of engaging in a whole host of other activities in the bedroom — and we don’t mean that in a “what you do behind closed doors is up to you” kind of way. Here are a few things you should never do in bed and why you’ll want to quit it.
In addition to disturbing your melatonin production, the TV in the bedroom also isn’t
relaxing you. “There’s a difference between relaxation and distraction,” Michael A. Grandner, Ph.D., an instructor of psychiatry and a member of the Behavioral Sleep Medicine program at the University of Pennsylvania, told HuffPost Healthy Living in 2013
. Television, especially if it’s an action-packed, dramatic show, falls squarely into the latter category. True relaxation will result in slower breathing and heart rate, less tense muscles, quieter thoughts — and that doesn’t sound like you after your latest “House of Cards” binge, does it? Even a more calming pre-bedtime routine, like reading, should typically be done out of bed.
5 – Cuddle With A Furry Friend
Fido sure is a great snuggle-buddy, but keep it to the couch: Allowing your pet in bed with you
only opens the door to sleep disturbances. On top of the kicking and barking and squirming, you’ll also have animal dander to deal with, which could trigger sleep-disrupting allergies.
While there’s nothing quite as beckoning as a warm bed, an ultra-cozy comforter situation won’t necessarily help you sleep. Generally, the optimal temp for sleeping soundly
is somewhere between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit. If your thermostat’s set correctly and you’re still sweating buckets, consider making your bed with two separate sets of sheets
so you can control your temperature without disrupting your cold-blooded
chillier bed partner.
It’s tempting to sneak in a few more minutes — and then a few more
minutes — after the alarm’s first buzz, but hitting the snooze button likely does more harm than good. That’s because snoozing usual disrupts crucial rapid eye movement or REM sleep, periods of which lengthen as the night goes on. Considering REM sleep is also the stage of sleep with the most brain activity
— and therefore likely the biggest brain benefits
— it’s probably not something you want to skimp on. Setting the alarm a little later and skipping the snooze cycle
is a smarter idea.
*Article originally published in the Huffington Post.
I had yet another dental appointment this week & was scared for my life. I would rather be stuck with 5,000 needles than to have a drill in my mouth for two hours on a single tooth. My new dentist is pretty good (I just started going to him this year) but when I walked into his office he didn’t seem as upbeat as usual.
That’s when it dawned on me that my prayers this morning were for the wrong person. I was praying that God keep me safe & calm during my root canal but I should’ve been praying for my dentist (actually the endodontist) instead. After all, he’s the one with the drill & the Novocain in his hands. It doesn’t matter how calm I am if my dentist didn’t get a good night’s rest. He might be too tired to do the best possible job on my teeth.
Have you ever been at work, only a few days away from a much needed vacation & can’t concentrate on your work because you‘re daydreaming about lying on a beach instead? Well what if my dentist had an upcoming vacation and couldn’t focus on my teeth? Uh oh, I’m in trouble. What about when you have a meeting right before lunch and your stomach is growling because you missed breakfast? Uh oh, I’m in trouble. What if my dentist had a fight with his wife that morning (or even the night before) and is in a bad mood now? Uh oh, I’m in trouble. What if my dentist doesn’t feel well but didn’t want to call in sick today? Uh oh, I’m in trouble.
So before you go to see a medical specialist of any kind, pray not just for yourself but also for your doctor. Trust me, it’ll make a difference!
With half the year now gone I’m starting to focus on things that I can do to better myself. I even made a list and here are some of the things on it –
- Invest more in others – Although not all of my friends check in on me, I should continue to check in with them. You never know what someone else is going through.
- Be a better housekeeper – When I clean, I clean. When I don’t, I don’t.
- Cook more often – You’ll never starve with me but I would like to expand my ‘recipe repertoire’
- Study the Scriptures more – It’s always good to get in the Word!
- Drivitude – I am mean out here in these streets so I need less road rage & to work on my drivitude! (driving + attitude = drivitude)
- Be a better daughter – As my parents get older I should take it upon myself to check up on them more often. After all, they took care of me and the time will come when I will have to take care of them (or at least pay somebody else to do it for me)
- Exercise more – This goes without saying
- Eat better – This too goes without saying
- Donate to more causes that my friends are supporting – Every year I’m running in some charity marathon or asking my friends & family to donate on behalf of a dead relative so I need to support other people’s causes as well
- Read more – I used to be a voracious reader of anything that I could get my hands on. But this past year, I haven’t read nearly as many books as I did when I was younger. I need to pick that back up
- Budget better – This is a perpetual goal of mine
- Floss more often – I already floss several times a week, but this is so important and should be done DAILY
- Cry more – Crying is not a bad thing. Releasing tears can sometimes soothe to the soul
- Sleep more – I am a night owl by nature, but the older I get the harder it is to justify staying up late. I have switched my work out schedule to the mornings instead of the evenings so I really need to get up earlier