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My Sleep Felt Like “Steroids For The Brain” After I Made These Simple Changes

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In 2022, I made a commitment to cut back from three cups of caffeine a day to one cup of coffee, which has made a huge difference in my sleep. I typically have my best night’s sleep on days when I do not take any caffeine after 10 a.m. I also tend to have a better night’s sleep when I have had a really intense workout at the gym.

The biggest thing that disrupts my sleep these days–which I have tested–is having a late dinner. Eating dinner after 10 p.m., which can sometimes happen when I go out with friends, will have the biggest effect on my sleep according to my Oura ring. My ring will detect that my sleep has been disrupted and predict that I had a late dinner.

When I have a good night’s sleep, it’s as if I’ve taken steroids for the brain. My thinking, cognition, and ability to get things done are all to the next level.

Average hours I sleep a night: 7 1/2 hoursIdeal bedtime: MidnightIdeal wake-up time: 7:30 a.m.Nightstand essentials: 5-HTP, a magnesium supplement, and melatonin are always on my nightstand. I also have my bedroom wired with red lighting1, which doesn’t activate your nervous system the way white light does.Favorite place I’ve ever slept: The business class seats of Emirates Airlines–I kid you not! The pampering and huge television screens are pure bliss.Sleep bad habit: Sometimes I get hooked on my phone reading on RedditCaffeine consumption: I have no more than one cup of caffeine a day, and then I might have 2-3 cups of decaf coffeeHow I track my sleep: Oura ringThe last product or habit that changed my sleep for the better:Michael BreusThe Mastery of Sleep Quest on Mindvalley. By following this program, I realized that there are actually varying levels of sleep. The more time you can spend in truly deep and rejuvenating sleep, the greater the benefits.
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10-10:30 p.m.: Typically, I like to rest by watching a good documentary or TV series. When I’m watching, I always do it with dimmed lights or candle lights in my apartment because bright lights late at night can affect your sleep. As the movie progresses, I may have a glass of red wine (I like Malbec) with dark chocolate–I typically limit it to one glass.

Sometimes I’ll read a book instead. One of the little changes I’m doing is switching from reading on my iPhone to a Kindle device, which better emulates the texture and lighting of paper. My Kindle device also doesn’t distract me with Whatsapp messages or Instagram notifications.

11 p.m.: I start winding down and getting ready for bed. Before I lay down, I make sure the room is set at an ideal temperature of 20 degrees Celsius (68 degrees Fahrenheit), as slightly colder temperatures help facilitate thermogenesis2 which may allow the body to burn more calories in your sleep.

11:30 p.m.: I brush my teeth, do my skincare routine, and take my nightly sleep supplements before lying in bed.

12 a.m.: As my head hits the pillow, I always have a ritual that I go through in my mind that helps me facilitate my sleep, which is the nighttime version of The 6 Phase Meditationmeditation I coined. I ask six questions:

How did I display kindness today? What was I grateful for today? What lesson did I learn today? What is a new vision or goal that came to me today? What is the biggest thing I would like to accomplish tomorrow? And finally, I pray to God to bless me to sleep well and protect me.

I put my phone on my nightstand when I’m ready to sleep, but I keep it on just in case I get a call from my kids or a family member needing help with something.

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