I’m gonna be honest, I’m not a particular fan of sleep.
As a pretty ambitious guy with a lot of ideas and a to-do list about a million miles long and nowhere near a thousand hours in Overwatch yet, I get pretty frustrated every time I realize that I have to spend a third of every single day asleep.
But, just like a car needs regular oil changes to keep running smoothly, our bodies need lots of good, high quality sleep to function properly.
Getting good sleep not only rebuilds muscle, regulates metabolism, and helps you keep focused, but it’s also an integral part of the learning process.
So with that in mind today I want to give you some tips that can help to improve the quality of your sleep and help you fall asleep faster.
To start out we have to talk about one of my absolute favorite substances in the world, which is coffee, or more particularly the caffeine in that coffee, because caffeine can actually disrupt your sleep quite a bit.
And the important thing to note here is that caffeine doesn’t just disrupt your sleep if you take it right before bed.
In fact, a 2013 study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine found that caffeine can actually disrupt your sleep even if it’s taken six hours before bed.
So the take away here is if you’re gonna drink caffeine, whether it’s coffee or whether it’s tea, if you drink those monster energy drinks you should probably just quit those altogether, but with coffee and tea, take those in the morning, let them give you a little brain boost, but then cut the caffeine well before your bedtime if you want to sleep well.
Tip number two is to do your exercising a little earlier in the day, and the reason you should do this is that exercise both raises your core body temperature and it places a mild amount of stress on your central nervous system, and both of these things can make it a little more difficult to get to sleep.
So if you feel like it’s taking you longer to get to sleep at night than it should and you happen to do your workouts or some form of exercise near bedtime, try shifting that to earlier in the day.
Alright, for the next tip Here we’re gonna talk about your phone and more specifically the light that your phone emits.
Smartphone screens, computer screens, TV screens, all these different screens that we spend all hours of the day staring at, all emit high concentrations of what’s called short wavelength enriched light, aka blue light.
And that can be a problem because that blue light can actually play havoc with your sleep schedule if you’re seeing it late at night, not during daylight hours.
And that is because your eyes contain what are called, and brace yourself because this is a bit of a mouthful, photosensitive retinal ganglion cells, and when light hits these cells your body clamps down on the secretion of a hormone called melatonin, which is helpful in inducing sleep.
Now, this biological mechanism works great during the daylight hours because it keeps your sleep schedule in sync with the day-night cycle. But once the sun goes down and then you go inside and keep looking at all these screens and keep throwing tons of light in your face all night, it can screw up your sleep cycle.
And blue light, in particular, has an especially powerful effect at clamping down on your body’s melatonin secretion.
So what can you do about this problem?
Number one, the simplest solution is to turn your screens off.
And this is something that I’ve been adopting in my own life because at 9 p.m. every single night I make sure that this computer behind me is turned off for the night, and that’s about an hour and a half before bed.
Now, if you just don’t want to turn your screens off or if you quite reasonably want to watch a TV show before going to bed, you want to check your phone, there’re some apps you can use to cut down on that amount of blue light. For both Mac and PC, as well as you Linux users, there’s an app called f.lux that I’ve been using for quite a long time, which basically just alters the color profile of your computer screen to make it a lot warmer and it makes it cut down a lot of that blue light.
If you have an iPhone there’s actually a built-in feature called Night Shift that does this exact same thing and you can set it to turn on at a specific time at night and then turn back off in the morning. If you’re an Android user you don’t benefit from having that built into the OS but there is an app called Twilight that basically does the exact same thing.
The other solution which I haven’t personally tried myself, but when I think about it, it seems like it would be the best one, is to buy yourself a pair of blue light blocking glasses.
Now, these look basically like your average safety glasses, you can get them off Amazon for about eight bucks, but the benefit would be is that they block all blue light, not just the blue light from your screens, which is beneficial when you’re looking at lots of artificial lighting in your house at night.
Tip number four pertains to any of your guys who have alarm clocks in your room that you can see from your bed, and the tip is, to turn those alarm clocks away from yourself so you can’t see the time.
One of the weird kinda counterintuitive facts about sleep is that we actually wake up several times during the night, at least to a degree.
Due to the nature of how the sleep cycle works we go through different stages of deep and shallow sleep and at that first stage, a lot of us actually briefly wake up or are in a semi-awoken state, but some people wake up fully.
And if you’re one of those people who finds themselves awake in the middle of the night and having trouble getting back to sleep, seeing the time you have remaining before you actually have to wake up for work or class or whatever can cause a lot of stress which makes it even harder to go back to sleep.
The last thing we have to talk about is improving your sleep environment, and that involves your bed itself, the amount of light in your room, the sounds, the odors, the temperature, a lot of different factors.
So we’re gonna briefly go through a few of them here and while we do that for each one ask yourself if you could be making any improvements.
So first up let’s talk about your pillow. A couple of things about pillows. Number one, you want to replace yours every couple of years, both because it breaks down overtime and gets less supportive, but also because every night you’re sleeping on it you’re kind of injecting that pillow with lots of dirt and germs and body odor and stuff that makes it gross, which can make it hard to fall asleep.
Secondly, and this was news to me until just recently, there’re different kinds of pillows for different kinds of sleepers.
For example, I am a side sleeper and for years I was just using like the most non-supportive awful pillows until I learned that a side sleeper probably is gonna need a firmer pillow that has these gussets on the side of it instead of just the two pieces of fabric that are stapled directly together.
And after sleeping on this thing for about a week now I can tell you it is a lot better than the stuff I was using before.
When it comes to the temperature in your room cooler is better, and according to the National Sleep Foundation, the optimal temperature range for sleeping is somewhere between 60 degrees Fahrenheit and 67 degrees Fahrenheit.
The amount of light in your room, or should I say lack of light, plays a big role as well because pitch darkness actually plays a big role in melatonin secretion.
So, if you have a lot of ambient light coming into your room from like a street light outside your apartment, you can pick up a blackout curtain which will basically eliminate that light altogether.
I’ve actually got one there that I use for filming. Also, if you happen to fall asleep with the TV on, you should probably try to break that habit because well, blue light.
Now, if you’re one of those people who thinks that the TV is soothing and they just can’t fall asleep without it, there’re some sound-based alternatives. And actually silence really isn’t the optimal solution for all people because silence is so often inconsistent.
There’s a bump in the night, there’s a voice in the other room, or there’s somebody snoring in the same room as you, so having some sound that can block out those inconsistencies can really help you fall asleep.
One option you can check out is ambient noise generators which can generate both white noise, which is basically just consistent noise that sounds a little bit like an air-conditioner, and ambient noises, like rain and thunder, and for me, my favorite one is Noisli, because you can add as many as you want, you can change the volume of each one and basically create the perfect mix for you.
There’s also lots of music out there that’s good for falling asleep too. I’ve made a playlist of my own and found several on Spotify and I’ll link to those down below, but my favorite way to fall asleep is with audiobooks.
For me at least, there is nothing better to fall asleep to than spoken word, and in fact, even since I discovered audiobooks back when I was probably 12 or 13, ll the way up until I graduated high school and got a roommate in college, I would fall asleep every single night to either Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card or The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams.
And as a result I have huge swaps of both those books basically memorized. Now, if you’d like to listen to those books yourself the absolute best place to get them is Audible. Audible has an unmatched library of audiobooks spanning just about every genre you could think of, and they also have an excellent app that does include a sleep timer.
I’ve been using Audible ever since I was a high school student and I don’t just use it for sleep, I also use it when I’m driving, when I’m cooking, when I’m folding laundry. Basically anytime when I’m doing a task that doesn’t involve a whole lot of mental activity I like to listen to an audiobook because it basically lets me double my productivity during those times.
Now, if you’d like to give Audible a try, you can get a free 30-day trial by going to audible.com/thomas, which is linked in the description down below, and that trial includes a free audiobook of your choosing that’s yours to keep forever whether you decide to subscribe or not.
If you’re looking for a recommendation one of the best books that I finished recently was Deep Work by Cal Newport, which is all about how to resist distractions and cultivate an ability to work intensely for long periods of time.
It is easily the book that made the biggest impact on my life last year and you can start listening to it today by checking out that link in the description down below.
I want to give a big thank you to Audible for sponsoring this video and thank you for watching and supporting this channel.
If you haven’t subscribed yet and you want to get new videos on learning and working more productively, you can click right there to do so, and you can click right over there to find a video that you’ll probably find interesting as well.
Thanks for watching and I’ll see you in the next one.
- clamp down：締め付ける
- screw up ：台無しに
- And that is because your eyes contain what are called, and brace yourself because this is a bit of a mouthful, photosensitive retinal ganglion cells, and when light hits these cells your body clamps down on the secretion of a hormone called melatonin, which is helpful in inducing sleep.
“and brace yourself —“あたりの文章の理解が曖昧になりそうなのでピックしました。
- Number one, you want to replace yours every couple of years, both because it breaks down overtime and gets less supportive, but also because every night you’re sleeping on it you’re kind of injecting that pillow with lots of dirt and germs and body odor and stuff that makes it gross, which can make it hard to fall asleep.
- A: Are you suffering from insomnia? When do you feel difficult to sleep?
- B: The number of people who have difficulties in sleeping are increasing these days. Do you agree or disagree?
- C: What is your best way to have good sleep?
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