When you think about your bedroom, what feelings come to mind?
- Feelings of stress from not being able to sleep?
- Excitement from watching movies in bed?
- Anxiety from cramming in that last bit of work before bed?
- Relaxation from drifting off into a nice deep sleep?
Scientists have found that the thoughts we have about our bedroom have a direct effect on our sleep. The technical term of this is called stimulus control. If you can change the way you feel about your bedroom, your sleep will change too.
Imagine your ideal bedroom. A place where you could lie down, forget about the outside world and comfortably drift off to sleep. What would your perfect bedroom be like?
- What would the colours of the walls and bed sheets be?
- What would it smell like?
- Other than the bed, what would tell you that this was a place for deep relaxation?
For most of us, our bedrooms represent our busy lives. Clothes on the floor, paperwork that needs to be done, a big TV in the corner and an unmade bed that looks totally out of place.
Now perhaps the thought of turning your current bedroom into the bedroom of your dreams is a bit of a stretch. Most of us don’t have extra cash lying around to splash out on a big new bed. Thankfully we don’t need to do anything big. Just small easy changes to your bedroom can make a big difference.
- Buy some lavender incense or aromatherapy oil to fragrance the room.
- Leave the window open an hour before bed to let fresh air into your room.
- Put up a few pictures of scenes you find relaxing
- Keep your bedroom as clean and clutter free as possible
- Give the walls a new relaxing colour.
- Watch the TV in another room before bed, keep the bed for sleeping only.
Just a few simple changes can help transform your bedroom, from just like any other room in the house, to a relaxing sleep haven that you’ll enjoy escaping to at the end of the day. Give one of these changes a try this month. Notice how your thoughts about your bedroom change and how much better your sleep becomes.
* * *
This article first appeared in January’s edition of the Monthly Sleep Tips Newsletter. Sign up here.