In part 2 of the ultimate realistic sleep guide, we go straight into the bedroom. The bedroom, and especially the bed, is the most important part of the sleep process. In part 1 we discussed how having the right habits outside the bedroom can help create the right routine. In this post, I want to talk to you about how creating proper sleep hygiene in the bedroom is necessary for the ultimate sleep.
The Right Bedroom Set Up
Time and time again I read unrealistic expectations of what your bedroom should be like. It should face this direction or that direction and your window dressings should be this or they should be that. In theory, it all sounds fine and dandy but the reality is a different thing. Some of the most common pieces of advice are –
The Bedroom is Only for Sleeping
In an ideal world, we would all have enough rooms in our home where there would be no need to double up in functionality. I’ve used a corner of my bedroom as a home office in the past, and frankly, if I didn’t have space I would do it again. The recommendation is to keep your bedroom only as that, a bedroom. A room to sleep, be intimate, and not much else.
This isn’t realistic for most of us, especially if we live in flats. What is realistic though, is to try and create an area for your bed that isolates it from the rest of the room. Create a division with shelving or a wall divider, or hell, even a curtain can work. It’s all about keeping that area separate from the rest of the room so you won’t be tempted to get up and faff about at your desk.
Whilst a lot of the advice out there is overrated, and unrealistic here is the advice I do recommend heeding –
Invest in a Good Mattress / Bed
They say that you’ll spend at least 1/3 on your life in bed. I’ve also heard that you are either on your feet or in your bed so you should invest in good shoes and a good mattress. I think this is very sound advice!
Determine what mattress is best for you by popping into a mattress shop. Allow the sales person to guide you through the types of mattresses and options available. Sure, you may not be able to buy the mattress right then and there but being armed with the knowledge of what best fits your needs will allow you to make a good decision when the time comes.
Have the Right Bedding
What’s the right mattress without the right bedding? Sure, you could use an old sheet and the mattress would still be top notch. But why not enhance the experience by having the right bedding? Sure, I’ve bought duvet covers off the high street but have always been partial to a luxurious, hotel-like bedding set. Luxury UK bedding retailers, like Julian Charles, for example, offer luxurious bedding at very good prices.
Comfortable sheets are absolutely essential to me but I don’t go as far as bringing my sheets with me when I come back to the U.S! I’ve struggled to find a sheet set that is comfortable, cool and durable here in the States but I recently discovered Ghostbed. I love the Supmia cotton and Tencel fiber blend of GhostBed’s luxury sheets which makes them breathable and light-weight. I’ve washed them several times and they are only getting more comfortable, which is pretty unique in my experience as I usually have to change sheets every 6 months or so! The sheets even come with a fantastic 3 year warranty.
The Right Finishing Touches
In our bedroom we rarely switch on the “big light” as the other half calls it. We always opt for soft lighting, fairy lights, and lamps throughout. This allows us to not expose our eyes (and brains) to stimulating lights. By mimicking the soft light of dusk or the comforting shade of candlelight we are able to start the relaxation process.
Another great thing to consider is having plants in the bedroom. Plants offer some colour and texture to your decor whilst also helping purify the air.
Scent in interiors is very powerful as well. Focus on bringing in some candles or air fresheners that will naturally promote calmness and relaxation. For example, lavender tends to be very popular and one scent I absolutely love. Vanilla, jasmine and ylang-ylang are also great alternatives. If you’re more sensitive to scents then focus on those you do love and can tolerate, like fresh laundry.
There you have it, my ultimate realistic sleep guide! I hope all these tips in part 1 and part 2 have been helpful! Don’t hesitate to leave a comment with your tips below.