I’ve always been a light sleeper. But in recent years, the problem has become more pronounced. I was waking during the night and then found that I was unable to go back to sleep, tossing and turning until daybreak.

Lack of sleep was starting to have an impact on my work. I was battling to concentrate and had become less productive. I was irritable and no fun to be around. I decided to take action and I haven’t looked back

Why sleep is important

As an adult, it is essential to get between seven and eight hours of quality sleep every night. Our brains use sleep time to store and consolidate the knowledge that we’ve accumulated during the day and to clear away accumulated toxins . 

Our bodies use the time to repair damaged cells and release the proteins and hormones that we require to function throughout the day. 

The rest ensures that our energy levels are restored and that bodies stay in good physical shape. Sleep allows our nerves to rearrange themselves for good brain hygiene.

Regular sleep is as necessary to our health as food and water. So how can we ensure that we get all the sleep we need?

5 things that can help you get better sleep

It’s unnecessary for most people to resort to pharmaceuticals to get a good night’s sleep. There are several quick and easy ways to improve sleep quality without breaking the bank.


Not only is exercise good for our health, researchers have found that it helps to ensure a better night’s sleep. I can confirm that since I started running each morning, not only do I feel better, I’ve lost a couple of kilograms and I’m sleeping a lot better. 

For most people, it seems, early morning exercise is more likely to assist with sleep problems than exercise later in the day. Researchers are not sure why but believe that it may have to do with stimulation.

Creating a restful sleep environment

Like most people I need a quiet, dark and cool room for a good night’s sleep. My bedroom is a restful place, free of clutter. 

Invest in good, dark and heavy curtains to keep out the light and some of the external noise. Embossed curtains work well. 

I’ve stopped watching television or using my cell phone at least an hour before bedtime. The blue light emitted by these devices can adversely affect sleep.


Meditation is a relaxation technique which has helped thousands of people to improve sleep quality. 

Effective meditation can make it easier to fall and stay asleep. It helps to clear the mind of the stresses and anxieties of the day. It is achieved by lying down, relaxing and breathing deeply while concentrating on the steady in and out movement of your breath. 

Every time your mind starts to wander you draw it back to your breathing again.

Weight Blankets

Weight blankets have been around for some time, but until recently they were used by therapists to reduce stress and anxiety in sense-deprived people. 

They are readily available and growing in popularity as people, like me, find that the extra weight reduces stress and anxiety, ensuring a better night’s sleep.

A weight blanket looks much like a duvet or comforter. Rather than filling the blanket with cotton or down, the manufacturers fill the pockets with glass or plastic beads or pellets, affording the blanket the comforting weight that reduces anxiety. 

The weight of the blanket feels like a warm embrace. Although there has been little research on weight blankets, The research that has been done confirms that weight blankets do improve the quality and quantity of sleep.   

Look after that circadian rhythm

Everybody has a 24 hour internal clock. It is this clock that decides when we have the most energy and when it is time to sleep. 

A sure way to ensure that we look after our circadian rhythm is to stick diligently to a routine when it comes to going to bed and waking again in the morning. 

Anyone who has ever battled jetlag will understand how exhausting a disrupted circadian clock can be. To preserve the circadian rhythm even weekend sleep schedules should remain unchanged.

In conclusion

Sleep deprivation is a health risk that can affect both our mental and physical well-being. 

Not getting enough sleep can lead to obesity, heart disease and high blood pressure. This is why I took action to ensure that I got a good night’s sleep every night. The result is that I feel so much more positive. I am able to concentrate and I have boundless energy. 

A few simple actions can make a big difference in your life too.