A show of hands: who here suffers from “Just One More” syndrome? You know, the nighttime affliction that tricks you into thinking, “I’ll watch just one more episode of The Great Bake-off and then I’ll go to bed.” The next thing you know, it’s 3am, you’re deep into the back nine of season 4, and you’re already dreading the next morning’s alarm ringing.
Whatever the reason, sleepless nights are not a good look. Sure, I can make it work once every few weeks, but consistently trying to drag myself out of bed without a good night’s sleep is a no-go for me. Or for my team. Or the barista making my matcha latte (“I SAID HEMP MILK, NOT ALMOND!!!”).
And let’s be serious, we can all use a reminder that optimal sleep has a positive, overall impact on our daily personal performance—however we define it.
Here are 10 essentials to sleep better at night, for a barista meltdown-free tomorrow:
Sleep Better tip # 1 Meditation time
I try to be mindful about powering down, metaphorically and literally, before bed. That’s why, when I turn out the lights, I play the daily audio meditation on my Calm app. It’s only ten minutes, and if I drift off to sleep in the middle of it, I’d say it’s done its job. Plus, it’s cheaper than conking out during a massage, amirite?!
Sleep Better tip # 2 Monitored, and Managed Sleep
I’ve tried to track my health and fitness before, but I never end up sticking with wearables, which have to be worn on the body (duh) and charged regularly. I can barely remember to put on my watch most days…and I’ll let you take bets on how often I think to wind it.
Thankfully, new gadgets like the Beautyrest Sleeptracker don’t come with any onerous accessorizing. Instead, the monitor sits underneath your mattress, while the processor tucks away beneath the bed. Best of all, the whole thing plugs directly into a wall outlet, making for an easy ‘set it and forget it’ situation.
The app on your phone shows you your respiration and heart rate, sleep cycles, and body movement and interruptions. My favorite part is the personalized support, with tips and tools like an alarm system that wakes you up at the optimal time in your sleep pattern and nightly ‘sleep scores’ (appealing to the competitor in me). You can even record and analyze two sleepers separately.
Sleep Better tip # 3 A scent for the bedroom
Look, I get it. Sometimes you get home from the gym and immediately strip down and jump into the shower. Before you know it, it’s an hour later, you’re watching the Brewers game out in the living room and waiting for your Seamless delivery, all while your smelly, sweaty clothes get cozy with your bedding.
A room spray is like deodorant for your bedroom when you need to get rid of some funk, or, hey, just want to freshen up your abode. Candles are another option, but I’m paralyzingly afraid of falling asleep while a candle’s burning.
Here are a few of team SG’s favorite room sprays for guys:
Sleep Better tip # 4 A Bed You’ll Love to Get Into
I can’t ignore the centerpiece of your bedroom when it comes to getting a great night’s sleep, namely, the bed itself. Look for a mattress that suits your sleep style, then consider your personal style when it comes to what to put on top of it. There are so many great options for bedding these days, you don’t have an excuse not to find sheets that feel as much “you” as your wardrobe does. There’s even bedding designed specifically for guys, if you want to get really nitty-gritty about it.
Sleep Better tip # 5 A nailed-down nighttime ritual
Do you wash your face right when you get home but wait ‘til bedtime to brush your teeth? Change into your pj’s after dinner but before checking your email one last time? Studies show that committing to good habits as part of a routine makes them easier to stick to. Take away the choice (“Mm, do I need to bother putting on face lotion tonight?”) and you’ll do the right thing without having to think too hard about it.
Sleep Better tip # 6 Lighting that suits your mood
Don’t underestimate the power of good lighting, especially in the bedroom. “Adjustable lighting is incredibly important for a good night’s sleep,” says interior designer Dani Arps. “The color and the brightness can help trigger your body into rest mode.”
But don’t let a lack of being handy stop you from optimizing your bedroom brightness (I wouldn’t know how to install a dimmer if my life depended on it). “I’m an advocate for Smart Bulbs – LED bulbs that work with any lamp,” says Arps. “You can control their color and brightness from an app on your phone, which can end up being a more affordable and less intrusive option for adjustable lights.”
Sleep Better tip # 7 Serious Pajama Style
Without turning this into something tawdry, I’ll just say, I am someone who always sleeps with at least socks on. Even in the middle of summer, you’ll find me with my toes stuffed into those fuzzy slipper socks your aunt gives you at the holidays because she doesn’t know what you’re “into” these days (to which I say, great! The fuzzier slipper socks, the better).
If you’re similarly clothing-inclined at bedtime, I highly suggest making getting dressed for bed as inspired as it is to get dressed for work (or play) in the morning. How? With cool PJs, natch. Here at SG HQ, we love Sleepy Jones for a classic, but fun bedtime lewk. And the best part? Pajama shirts are très trendy right now, so if you’re running late in the AM, just throw on a pair of pants with driving mocs and you’re ready to take on the day.
…Okay, that last bit probably depends on where you work, but check out the Gos totally pulling it off!
Sleep Better tip # 8 Perfectly Picked Plants
I could blast you with empirical data about the benefits of having plants around, but instead, I’ll just say this; plants look pretty and make you feel good. If you can keep them alive, buy a few for your bedroom.
According to the fine folks at plant delivery service The Sill, houseplants can even improve indoor air quality significantly, great for those with breathing issues that can keep them up at night. “Plants emit oxygen, humidity, and negative ions, which remove dust, mold, bacteria, and allergens from the air,” explains The Sill’s plant scientist Christopher Satch. “All this makes for better air quality and a better night’s rest.”
Of course, if those all sound like too much responsibility, you can always invest in a few succulents (lol, “invest” – they’re like $3 a pop) and call it a day.
Sleep Better tip # 9 Water at hand
While I can’t quite explain why, I once read a book written by Cameron Diaz (yes, that Cameron Diaz) on healthy living.
In it, she said that every morning she chugs a room temperature glass of water placed next to her bed the night before. The way she put it – and I seem to remember she co-wrote this book with a doctor but whatever, it does seem logical – is your body has spent the hours you’ve been asleep becoming progressively more dehydrated until, by the morning, your innards are totally parched.
Beyond that, in doing so, you’re already one glass down in the suggested eight glasses a day before your feet even hit the floor. Makes sense to me, Dr. Diaz.
That’s why, ever since, I’ve done the same. It feels like a good way to 1) prep for the next day in an easy way (certainly easier than deciding that next-day outfit), and 2) start your day in a healthy way.
Sleep Better tip # 10 Nightstand fodder
For as long as I can remember, reading before bed has been a part of my nighttime routine. While I’m super boring and read mostly business and self-help books (and look at me now!), anything that gives your eyeballs a break from endlessly scrolling Twitter on your phone before bed is a good thing. Here are a few of my favorites this summer; I’d love to hear what’s currently on your bedside in the comments.
Got your nighttime routine down, but not your ‘getting dressed in the morning’ one?
SG can help
If you’re ready to upgrade more than your sleeping habits, but dread the thought of shopping for new clothes…consider having Team SG shop for you! We’re obviously biased, but clients tell us we’re really great!
Let us rescue you from shopping fatigue and sartorial apathy. We can promise the kind of personal attention and care that will make you feel like the best version of the awesome guy you already are! Ready to seriously improve your closet and your confidence? Give us a shout.
> Want more #SGapproved ‘look good, feel good’ tips and tricks? Great, here you go!