By this point in the school year, your sleep schedule probably involves facedown afternoon naps that end with drool everywhere, followed by a bedtime around 4 a.m. It’s a hard-knock life being young these days: staying on top of all the work means throwing sleep out the window, and even when your work is done, falling asleep remains impossible, because of the existence of CuteRoulette. But for better or for worse, sleep is necessary. Everybody needs down time to heal, reduce stress, and prevent health problems. Here's how to make people stop asking if you have narcolepsy, and start asking if you come from the planet of Krypton, because your energy is so super:
Step 1: Figure out what needs to change
Common signs of sleep deprivation include seeing fairies in the girls’ bathroom mirror, forgetting how to spell your own name, and finding food in your hair that you don't even remember eating. These sensations will last from the time you wake up in the morning to approximately 7 p.m., when you suddenly burst awake, filled with a feeling of invincibility. If it sounds like I’ve been stalking you because of how accurately I just described your life, you may want to consider sleep rehab.
Step 2: Take steps to improve your problem areas
Here are some sleep tips to start with:
• Skip the bedtime pizza and other food experiments. Eating large meals late can disrupt sleep.
• Create a sleep environment and bedtime routine that puts you in a relaxed state of mind. Even if you have to soak in a tub of chamomile tea, it’ll be worth it when you actually have a good night’s rest.
• Exercising during the day will give you energy through the evening and leave you feeling tired at night. It’ll be easier to sleep at a reasonable hour if your body is tuckered out.
• Avoid emotionally upsetting conversations and media before bedtime. Seriously consider not watching any late-night TV, and log off of Facebook at least two hours before falling asleep.
• Make sure to get enough sunlight. The UV rays will help recalibrate your circadian rhythm. So try doing your homework outside in the afternoon or reading in the yard.
Step 3: Experiment till you find what works
As with most of life, figuring out what works for you will take a bit of experimenting. Mess around with different bedtime rituals to see what leaves you feeling chipper in the mornings, with fewer violent tendencies. Once you find the system that works best for you, stick to it.
How do you sleep at night? Give us your bedtime tips, we're exhausted!