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7 Day Better Sleep Challenge: Small Changes Make the Difference

Cover photo for 7 Day Better Sleep Challenge

A 7-day schedule to fall asleep faster and slowly fix your sleeping routine.

Building the perfect sleeping routine is not that easy — maybe even impossible if you are addicted to your smartphone. But there’s always room for improvement.

Since smartphones became our digital hands, we have struggled to keep regular sleeping schedules. And every time we decide to fix our routines and sleep at least 7 hours per night, we get distracted by a new meme, text, or e-mail, and we end up going to bed late as always.

But that’s not everything.

The fear of missing out has become a constant in our lives. And it makes us procrastinate more than ever before. Therefore:

  • the time we spend working has remained the same
  • our free time has shrunk because of our procrastination habits
  • and cutting our sleep time has become the only way we can do everything we want.

The only way to regain control over our sleeping habits is to follow a rigid schedule that forces us to sleep better and fall asleep easier. So here is a 7-day better sleep challenge that can help you.

The Problem of Unplanned Sleeping Schedules

When trying to eliminate bad sleeping habits, most people start improving their lives from zero to hero. They ignore intermediate tries and use unplanned sleeping schedules, so they fail. But they also give up on failures pretty soon because they have never experienced the challenges of real improvement.

But to achieve consistent results and improve your sleep, train yourself with small challenges first. Then, you can aim for more consistent improvements. And this 7-day better sleep challenge will help you improve your sleep in one week.

7 Day Better Sleep Challenge

For this 7-day better sleep challenge, you will aim to achieve only one goal: sleeping 7 to 8 hours per night.

It doesn’t matter how well you sleep and how much energy you will recover. The only thing that matters is getting rid of the fear of missing out and transitioning into the bedtime routine. And to keep things fresh, you will transition differently every night. So if you want to repeat the challenge and improve your sleeping habit for good, you can choose those you like the most.

1 — Journalize your day.

You can spend time away from digital devices by journaling about your day on the first evening. Usually, this small activity will take between 10 and 15 minutes. But it helps you recollect your thoughts and enter a relaxing mental state. So you can sleep better and fall asleep faster.

However, even if journaling is easy, you might have never done it before. So here are a few prompts you can try.

  • Why did you decide to sleep better? And how do you think sleeping better can help you?
  • Do you think you will continue even after this short challenge?
  • Which was the most exciting moment of your day?
  • Have you received any news today? Or did you learn anything new?
  • What is one thing you thought you could do today but then delayed? And when are you planning to do it?

2 — Drink a hot beverage.

You can spend the second evening of your 7-day better sleep challenge drinking a hot beverage.

Many studies proved that drinking hot beverages like milk and water improve sleep quality and reduces nighttime wakings. But they have many more benefits:

  • Hot water before sleeping improves digestion and, therefore, weight loss.
  • Hot beverages also help dissolve blood clots and reduce heart diseases.
  • And they also help your body flush out harmful toxins thanks to improved blood circulation.

However, not every hot beverage is good for your body. For example, coffee, tea, soda, and energy drinks block your sleep receptors. So you will struggle to fall asleep.

3 — Take a hot shower.

Hot temperatures don’t only help your sleep from the inside but also the outside. So on the third day of your 7-day better sleep challenge, take a hot shower.

recent study found that taking a hot bath between one and three hours before sleeping helps people fall asleep faster. And it all has to deal with the physiology of falling asleep itself.

Sleeping requires your body to cool down. And thanks to hot showers, you stimulate your blood flow so your body can dissipate heat faster.

However, to achieve improved effects, don’t bathe right before bedtime. Otherwise, your body will warm up, it will take more time to dissipate the heat, and you won’t fall asleep.

4 — Have a meaningful conversation.

Contrary to high-intensity activities that wake you up, relaxing activities can help you fall asleep easier. So on the fourth evening of your 7-day better sleep challenge, try to have a meaningful conversation with someone. Even better if you meet that person.

Isolating yourself isn’t always the best choice when it comes to sleeping. Sometimes, talking with someone and sharing your feelings can release stress, calm you down, and help you fall asleep faster.

Also, having a meaningful conversation in person keeps you away from your smartphone or other digital devices. So you won’t risk getting distracted by e-mails, texts, or other notifications.

5 — Calm your mind or stretch your body.

Mindfulness helped me fall asleep faster for years. But if you struggle with meditation, you can even relax your body by following simple stretching or yoga exercises.

Many times, you will struggle to fall asleep because of two reasons:

  • You haven’t collected enough fatigue during the day and are still full of energy.
  • Many thoughts are stressing you out, and you can’t stop thinking about your problems.

But if you learn to recognize the problem, you can solve it faster.

  • If you are not tired enough, stretch your body and release any extra energy stored in your body.
  • If your problems are stressing you out, relieve your mind through mindfulness.

6 — Plan the following day.

One of the best evening routines involves planning tasks for the following day. And it can help you in two ways.

  • First, planning takes a lot of brain power. So you will fatigue faster, and it will be easier to fall asleep.
  • And second, you will wake up knowing what you need to do. So you will finish your tasks faster, procrastinate less, and have more free time to use as you wish. The fear of missing out will slightly improve, and you won’t need to cut off part of your sleep hours.

But beware of using digital systems to plan your day. Blue light affects your eyes by blocking your sleep hormone (melatonin). And you also expose yourself to any kind of distraction your phone will throw your way.

7 — Read a book.

And last but not because of its efficiency: read a book.

There is no easier way to fall asleep than reading a boring book about a topic you don’t like. But if you don’t want to torture yourself with boring books, you can read whatever you like.

Reading is one of the best ways to relax your mind and start wondering with your imagination. And once you do, you will fall asleep easier.

However, avoid intriguing books with intricate plots that require close attention. If they become too fascinating, they will have the opposite effect.

7-Day Better Sleep Challenge (Non-Customizable Version)
7-Day Better Sleep Challenge (Non-Customizable Version)

You can also download the 7 Day Better Sleep Challenge customizable infographic if you want to build one with better routines.

Final Thoughts

In your journey to build a better sleeping routine, you can find many things that will help or force you to sleep poorly. But you cannot use all that knowledge at once. And little consistent steps will always better vast and unplanned changes.

If you change your life too, you will get exhausted after a few days. Perhaps you will restrict your free time without eliminating procrastination from your routine. So the fear of missing out will rise, and you will give up.

But substantial changes hardly happened overnight (no pun intended).

If you make small changes, you have more time to adapt. So focus on transforming your bad routine into something better. And then improve it a little more.

After a while, you will create a perfect sleeping routine that allows you to sleep from 7 to 8 hours per night without discomfort.

So start small. If you care about changing your unhealthy habits, start with a 7-day better sleep challenge. Complete it. And then move to the next step.

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Cover photo by Andriyko Podilnyk on Unsplash.