Home / Blog May 15, 2024

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12 Tried-And-True Tips To Make Yourself Sleepy

Making yourself sleepy is not an easy fit, but it is definitely achievable! From creating a relaxing pre-nap ritual to trying progressive muscle relaxation while in bed, this blog shares the most effective ways to fall asleep naturally.

How To Make Yourself Sleepy


Try dimming the lights, deep breathing, and reading a book to fall asleep faster.

Exercise during the day and get natural light exposure to support your circadian rhythm.

To relax when already in bed, consider the comfort of a weighted blanket for deep rest. 

Did you know?
On average, humans spend about one-third of their lives sleeping. If you live to be 90 years old, that’s 30 years spent in slumber!

Ever found yourself tossing and turning, wishing you could just fast-track your way to dreamland? Well, you're not alone! The quest for a good night’s rest often feels like a mysterious journey, so in this blog, we bring you not one, but 12 things you can try to make yourself delightfully tired and ready for bedtime.

Let’s dive right in!

12 Tips To Make Yourself Sleepy Before Bed

Here are some things you can try to make yourself fall asleep naturally and with ease:

1. Create a Relaxing Bedtime Routine

Craft a bedtime routine that signals to your body that it’s time to wind down and get ready for a journey to slumberland. This can include doing things like taking a warm bath, engaging in a calming activity like gently stretching, or even getting in your “om”s through mindfulness meditations.

The goal is to create a sequence of events that tells your body, “This looks like a good time to take a long nap”. It also helps if you keep these activities consistent so that your body has a list of tell-tale signs for when it’s lights-out. The key is to try multiple tips until you find what really gets you relaxed and ready to surrender to the call of a goodnight’s rest.

2. Dim the Lights In Your Bedroom

Your body has an internal time-keeper, also known as the circadian rhythm. This system takes hints from the amount of light and darkness you’re exposed to. If you want to send a quick message to let this system know that it’s time to rest, dimming the lights can really go a long way.

You can start dimming the lights about an hour before your bedtime. This copies the natural decrease in light when the sun sets. The switch that happens between the sun and the moon also basically transitions your body into sleep mode, which comes with an increase in melatonin (the sleep hormone).

3. Limit Screen Time

As lovely as your smartphone and laptop are, they produce blue light which is like a stop-sign for melatonin production. This means that scrolling on your phone too close to bedtime or watching something on your laptop just before going to bed may not be the best way to unwind. All this actually does is make you feel more awake when you need to be ZzZ-ing away.

If you are a night owl or you need to be on your laptop late into the night, you may want to use “night mode” on your devices. This is an in-built feature on most electronics that keeps blue light at bay. Also, if you’re into reading… then consider getting a device like a Kindle or Remarkable as they do not emit blue light either.

4. Read a Physical Book

Speaking of reading, if you’re the type to delve into fiction-land before bed, then consider grabbing a trusty book that can help your mind stay engaged, but not with the bright lights from screens. Also, simply reading a book before bed can be a pleasant and low-stimulus activity that signals to your brain that it’s time to chill.

When choosing a book, opt for genres that are not overly stimulating or suspenseful. Choose a dim light for reading as well to further support the transition into a sleepy state. So, a bedside lamp should work just fine!

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5. Practice Mindful Breathing

When you take deep and intentional breaths, your body feels more relaxed and at ease. One popular breathing technique is diaphragmatic breathing. To try this, inhale slowly through your nose and make sure you feel your chest expanding. Then hold your breath for a few seconds and then exhale slowly through your mouth.

This sort of breathing beckons to your sympathetic nervous system that you’re safe and sound. The sympathetic nervous system is like your body’s alert system, preparing you for action and boosting your energy when you need to face exciting or challenging situations. So by breathing deeply, you’re letting your brain know, “Hey, we’re not in trouble… we can close our eyes and let the dream fairies take it away!”

6. Make Your Sleep Environment Comfy

This is where things get exciting because your comfort is totally up to personal preference! For example, some people like sleeping with some white noise… others don’t – and that’s okay! What matters is that you reduce as many distractions hanging over your head as possible so that your body can focus on its nightly duties.

Generally though, it helps to sleep in a cooler room because your body’s temperature needs to drop a bit for you to slide into slumber mode. It also helps to make your environment as dark as possible, which is why investing in block-out curtains or earplugs for sleeping can help. You can also consider getting an eye mask so that your eyes can also rest with ease.


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7. Use Natural Sleep Aids

There are several sleep aids that you can use, but one that’s proven to be both effective and non-invasive is weighted blankets. The Deep Touch Pressure (DTP) provided by a weighted blanket like our Cotton Napper can have a calming effect on the nervous system. This may be particularly beneficial if you experience anxiety or sensory processing issues, as the gentle pressure from our Napper mimics the sensation of a comforting hug.

Some studies suggest that the use of weighted blankets may lead to improved sleep quality and longer sleep duration. The calming effects of DTP also help reduce restlessness and promote a sense of security, ensuring you fall asleep faster and experience more restorative sleep.

8. Steer Clear Of Stimulants

The sneakiest stimulants that impact our ability to sleep well are caffeine and nicotine. Caffeine keeps you awake by blocking a sleepy signal in your brain, making it difficult for you to feel tired and fall asleep. This is even worse if we have caffeine close to bedtime because caffeine likes to stick around in our bloodstream for a long period of time, that is, over five hours! So it is best to ensure that you cut off your coffee intake at around 2 PM to ensure your body has enough time to excrete caffeine during the afternoon.

Likewise, nicotine is a stimulant that increases alertness and heart rate, making it harder to relax and fall asleep. On top of that, nicotine can also make you wake up multiple times at night due to withdrawal symptoms like insomnia. This means that you should also steer clear of smoking close to bedtime to ensure that your body is not stimulated and alert when you want it to wind down for the night!

9. Drink Herbal Teas

Certain teas contain natural compounds that can woo you and make you feel sedated – in a good way, of course. Some of these herbs for deep sleep include chamomile, valerian root, red ginseng, and lavender. Sipping on a warm cup of herbal tea before bedtime soothes and comforts your body, which eventually makes you sleepy.

If you wish to take tea to help you fall asleep, be mindful of the caffeine content though. If possible, opt for something that is caffeine-free or with very little caffeine.

10. Progressive Muscle Relaxation (PMR)

PMR is one of the most effective relaxation techniques for sleeping faster. It’s kind of like teaching your body how to calm down by contracting and relaxing your muscles. By doing this, you’re helping your body release physical tension and promoting a sense of relaxation.

Basically, to try PMR for better sleep, lie down comfortably and then squeeze, then release each muscle group one at a time, starting from your toes and working your way up to your head. As you tense and relax each muscle group, focus on the sensations, and take slow, deep breaths. Repeat this to help release tension and promote a calm state that can make it easier for you to fall asleep peacefully.

11. Guided Meditation or Yoga Nidra

Trying guided meditation can help you learn how to consciously remind yourself to relax, which is essential in helping you fall asleep. Yoga Nidra, also known as ‘Yogic Sleep’, is a form of guided relaxation techniques where you lie down, close your eyes, and follow verbal instructions to bring about a state of deep relaxation.

Yoga Nidra helps reduce stress, promote relaxation, and enhance overall well-being by systematically guiding your attention through different parts of your body and encouraging a sense of calm awareness.

12. Limit Fluid Intake Close To Bedtime

While hydration is essential, reducing fluid intake, especially in the evening, can minimize disruptions during the night due to bathroom visits. Steer clear of chugging large amounts of liquid close to bedtime, even if it’s herbal tea.

In the same way, steer clear of having any large meals as that could actually keep your body. This is because your body still digests food as you sleep, so eating too close to bedtime could signal to your body that you’re not ready to close down for the night.

Now that we’ve looked at what to do close to bedtime to ensure you sleep well, let’s turn to what you can incorporate into your daily routine to feel more ready to sleep at night. The way your day goes has a great impact on your body’s willingness to rest when it’s time to, so let’s discuss this more in the next section.

Tips To Make Yourself Sleepy Before Bed

How To Make Yourself Tired During The Day

Falling asleep faster involves a combination of things you do during the day as well as stuff you do during the night. Here are some activities you can try when the sun’s out and about to prepare your body for ease with sleeping later on after sundown:

1. Engage In Exercise

Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise during the day. This can include activities ranging from brisk walking and running to cycling and dancing – all of which have proven to be quite effective in making people tired later at night.

That being said, steer clear of intense exercising too close to bedtime because working out before bed could actually keep you awake and make it harder for your body to get into a relaxed state. Simply, keep all exercise-like activity well before the one-hour window around your bedtime. This way, your muscles have enough time to relax and prepare for the night as well.

2. Get Some Natural Light Exposure

Spend some time outdoors – especially in the morning – to let your body receive natural sunlight. Sunlight helps to regulate your body’s internal clock, which knows to keep you awake during the day and asleep at night.

If you aim for at least fifteen minutes of direct sunlight, you should be able to see some difference in when you sleep and wake up. If you work an office job, consider taking a quick stroll outside when the sun’s out, especially when you’re having that afternoon slump and are tempted to take an afternoon nap!

3. Stay Hydrated

If you’re feeling like a zombie and want to take an afternoon power nap for an energy boost, keep it below 30 minutes and at least before 3 pm. This way, the nap will not disrupt your body’s schedule of when to sleep

4. Eat A Healthy Diet

It also helps to consume a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins. Nutritious foods generally help your body stay in optimal shape so that all your systems can communicate effectively with one another.

For instance, hormonal imbalances can interfere with your sleep quality, so it helps to ensure that you’re practicing healthy lifestyle tips to keep your hormones in check. A nutritious and healthy diet can be the key to keeping a shiny and sparkly hormone profile!

5. Establish a Routine

Plan to maintain a consistent sleep schedule by going to bed and waking up at the same time every day. This helps to let your body know what time windows you’re usually awake and when you need to sleep. Doing this will also help to improve the quality of your sleep.


Falling asleep easily is absolutely achievable! It involves a trial-and-error approach of finding what works best for your body. For most people, it helps to take on a holistic perspective that includes stuff you do in the day as well as just before bedtime. From creating a calming pre-sleep ritual to essentially sun basking, this blog covers easy sleep tips for adults, including ways on how to get tired fast when preparing for bed.