PREPARE PHYSICALLY FOR SLEEP
When Dr. Bartel says “prepare for sleep” it’s all about sorting out your room and your sleeping environment. He notes that most people often sleep in chaos, surrounded by too much light, excess noise or simply just a mess.
He reminds us that people often do things before going to bed that pump up their energy instead of preparing them for sleep. Things like working out just before going to bed, watching TV, getting into an argument – they all work against the process of going to sleep.
PREPARE PSYCHOLOGICALLY FOR SLEEP
A lot of people just go straight to bed without really thinking about going to sleep – they just crash. Dr. Bartel recommends that people have a ritual before they go to bed that raises the expectation that sleep is going to happen.
Things like brushing your teeth, closing the blinds, getting undressed, changing the lighting, reducing distractions – all of these are steps work towards getting the mind ready to go to sleep.
Dr. Bartel hints that for some people, this process may start a whole hour before they actually lie down in their beds. Steps that contribute towards a relaxed state will make a big difference– for some, it may even be having a glass of milk, eating half a banana or some tuna (which are known to enhance sleep) an hour before they go to bed.
During this ritual, Dr. Bartel says that turning on a sound device or recording of some sort will work towards creating a relaxed state of mind. If you were using the VTS-1000 for example, he recommends specifically turning on the relaxation tracks starting about an hour before you go to bed.
“Avoid stressful emails, and don’t bring your cell phone to bed, in fact, turn those things off!” All of those will disturb the sleep.
HELP YOUR BRAIN GO TO SLEEP WITH SLEEP TRACKS
The S-650-01 Sound Oasis Sound Therapy System device has sleep tracks that actually relax and help your brain go to sleep. This is especially helpful if you wake up in the middle of the night and can’t get back to sleep. Your mind might wake up and immediately start thinking about what to worry about – but if the sleep tracks are on, this will train your brain to stay in the relaxed state and go back to sleep.
USE MUSIC UPON WAKE UP
When you wake up you could switch to something like an Alpha track on your sound device if you want to wake up gently. An Alpha track (like the Woodlands track on the S-650-01 system that has birds chirping in the background) helps contribute to a relaxed but awake state or energy level similar to the feeling you have when you first awake.
REDUCE STRESS DURING THE DAY
Dr. Bartel also suggests looking at what we do during the day and how we can actively change our habits to reduce stress in our life. What we do during the day contributes significantly to how we sleep at night. We can’t expect to be fully relaxed at night if we are anxious and stressed during the day. The more we can stay in a focused, unstressed state or zone, the more likely we’ll sleep better. So keeping the day focused but controlled is a big part of reducing the stress in our lives.
Dr. Bartel recommends to actively try to get yourself in a productive work zone – a place where you feel good about what you’ve produced or accomplished but have also addressed issues and problems to get things stabilized in your lifestyle.
There are sound tracks available (like the SC300-01 Sound Oasis Sleep Relaxation Wellness Sound Card that help create a more relaxed environment during your workday that can ultimately contribute to a reduction in the brain’s stress levels as well provide relaxing and soothing sounds for deep relaxation and a better night’s sleep.