As a hard-working entrepreneur, you probably have been encouraged to think that sleep is for the weak. After all, “you snooze, you lose,” right?
The reality is that sleep deprivation can negatively affect your overall health. If you suffer from sleep insomnia, you are probably aware of these unwanted side effects.
Here are the four secrets to battling insomnia as a startup founder.
Decompress Before Bedtime.
Many startup founders work right until bedtime. The problem with this routine is that you’ll end up thinking about work while lying in bed. More than likely, you’ll pay for it the next day.
A better strategy is to stop working at least an hour before bedtime. By doing so, you’ll have time to decompress, whether you spend the time before bedtime reading fiction, working out, or talking to a friend.
Engage in Regular Exercise.
Most people know that there are several health benefits of regular exercise, but did you know that working out can significantly enhance your sleep quality?
One of the best workouts for fighting insomnia is cardio exercises. These types of exercises have been shown to stimulate the secretion of endorphins, which promote optimal sleep. So, if you would like to maintain regular sleep, consider engaging in one of these cardio exercises for at least twenty minutes a day: running, swimming, jumping rope, or cycling.
Yoga is also a great workout activity to improve sleep because it calms the body and mind. The activity can improve breathing as well.
Practice Breathing, Body Scanning, and Muscle Relaxation Exercises.
Completing some breathing exercises before bedtime can also encourage better sleep.
There are a wide variety of breathing exercises that you can try, from rhythmic breathing and deep breathing to abdominal breathing and breathing imagery.
Counting sheep while breathing can also help you fall asleep, despite some claims suggesting this sleeping technique is only a myth. As you are deep breathing, try counting backward from 100. Practice this technique until you are very sleepy.
Many startup founders have experienced much success doing body scanning and progressive muscle relaxation to fall asleep, so you may want to give these great exercises a try as well.
Get Up and Journal.
If you are still having trouble sleeping after completing these exercises, you may need to journal the thoughts that are keeping you awake.
Maybe you are overwhelmed by tomorrow’s to-do list. Or, perhaps you are concerned about a work big problem. Regardless of what you are thinking, journaling can help you get some rest.
Pro Tip: When you are getting your thoughts onto paper, don’t worry about grammar or punctuation. The main priority is to preserve your train of thought during the wee hours of the night.
Say “No” Sometimes to Alcohol.
There is no doubt that startup founders battle an enormous amount of stress. Many startup founders will drink alcohol to reduce their stress levels.
A drink or two can reduce stress but drinking too much alcohol may cause insomnia and many more problems. After consuming more than three drinks, you’re more likely to wake up tired and groggy the next day, causing you to be unmotivated and unproductive.
The best thing to do is to reduce your alcohol intake every day. Most experts recommend only one drink for women and two drinks for men on a daily basis.
Sleep on A Memory Foam Mattress.
A memory foam mattress has been shown to support better sleep. Here’s the catch: the memory foam mattress needs to always stay cool.
Consider these great ways to create a cool mattress:
- Add a mattress pad
- Sleep on a cotton or feather pillow
- Reduce the room temperature
- Use cooler bed sheets
- Apply a slated base foundation.
Once your memory foam mattress is cool, you’ll easily be able to stay asleep all night long. A memory foam mattress is also a great option for people who constantly battle back pain.