10 Things Successful People Do After Waking Up & Before Going to Sleep

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10 Successful People Do After Waking Up and Before Going to Sleep

Success begins and ends around the bedroom. Getting a good night sleep and waking up ready to face the world can mean the difference between scoring high on that physics exam or failing to make it to class. This list includes the 10 things successful people do after waking up and before going to sleep so you can maximize your potential.

 

After Waking Up

 

  1. Eat Breakfast

Skipping breakfast can be a major mistake. It may mean being hungry during class, binge eating before lunch, or just feeling out of sorts. Start your day with a healthy, filling breakfast and set your body on the right track.

 

  1. Work on a Project

While you may not consider yourself a morning person, tackling a big assignment or project an hour or so after you get up can lead to great results. You’ll be more focused, less likely to be distracted, and be able to prioritize work that needs to get done ASAP.

 

  1. Read, Read, Read

We all know that reading for fun can do wonders for our mind in the long term, but reading can also help center ourselves, give us a burst of creativity, and catch us up on world events. Use the morning to read about things you are passionate about such as a political issue or a hobby you’re trying to get into.

 

  1. Talk and Network

Interacting with others can help you feel more alert, especially on sleepy days, as their energy may rub off on you. But there’s a huge reason why you should plan a coffee meeting with your advisor or professor — they’re more likely to be receptive to you because they will be less distracted and you’ll be first on their list. This is the perfect tip if you’re looking to find an academic mentor!

 

  1. Exercise or Meditate for Clarity

Exercising in the morning has long been known to help your energy and even may do some good with your metabolism. But exercising, taking a yoga class, or meditating can also be a great way to process the long day ahead. Take a moment on the treadmill or mat to think through all you have to do and use your clearer headspace as a way to strategize.

 

Before Going to Sleep

 

  1. Disconnect and Turn Off

Goodbye cell phones. Adios emails. Turn yourself completely off. This means no screens at all. Replace them with books, soothing music, and light conversations with your roommate or friends. You’ll feel better when you let go.

 

  1. Take a Walk or Stretch

Working out right before bed can be a huge no-no. Instead, if you feel you need to move, go for a walk to finish off your step count or stretch with a bedtime yoga routine. Your body will feel great and ready to relax.

 

  1. Have a Healthy Routine

Having a routine is important for both waking up and going to bed, but prioritizing it at night can set you up for sleep success. Add a face mask once a week, plan and schedule your showers, or give yourself a nice foot massage. The more you do it at the same time every night, the more likely your body will signal to power down.

 

  1. Prioritize Sleep

5 hours a night isn’t going to cut it if you really want to be successful. Instead, give yourself time to get in at least 7. Set your alarm so that it reflects this goal and wear a tracker so you can see how productive your sleep really was.

 

  1. Reflect on the Day

Taking a moment to sit with your thoughts is just as important as turning off your phone or finishing off your last bit of work. Reflecting is a powerful way of analyzing what went right during the day and what you wish you could change. Use this to write out to-do lists for tomorrow or set goals for the future. After all, a new day begins in just a few short hours.

Always Tired? Try These 7 Tips to Stay Awake in Class

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Your head feels like it weighs a million pounds. Your eyelids droop as if they are being pulled down. Your mind goes blank as you drift off in a sea of comfortable peace…

…and then you wake up with a start. Class is over and you’ve missed the whole thing! Fighting off exhaustion and trying to stay alert in lectures are pretty typical problems to have in college. But if you’re getting worried that you’re always tired, try these seven tips to stay awake in class.

 

 

1. Hydrate and Refuel

Treat your class like a marathon by being sure you have the right fuel to make it through. Sometimes, falling asleep might be a symptom of hunger or dehydration. Keeping a water bottle by your side and a few low-key snacks in your backpack can help you get the burst of energy you need. We recommend healthy, easy-to-carry options like granola bars and fruit (peppermint is also supposed to help you stay awake), and if you must caffeinate instead of water, try black tea or coffee so you don’t get an overdose of sugar.

 

2. Ask Questions

The more engaged you are, the more you’ll be forced to keep those eyes open. Don’t be afraid to raise your hand and ask the teacher to clarify a point or review over a difficult subject. Answer a question the professor has or volunteer to participate in a demonstration. If it gets your mind moving, it’s so worth it.

 

3. Assign Yourself a Distraction

Just like being engaged, stay alert by giving yourself a small task. For instance, doodle a picture of the professor, write a poem about your classmate’s hideous hat, make a to-do list for the end of the day, or fill in your calendar with the rest of your syllabus’ due dates. The key is to not pick tasks that will take your mind off of class but will give you a temporary distraction that will re-awaken your mind.

 

4. Shower or Exercise Before Class

Running from bed to morning class isn’t going to do you any favors when you need to stay up. Instead, start your early routine with something that will invigorate you like a cold shower or a run around the track. Both activities wake up your senses and give you enough adrenaline to get through the next few hours without needing a pillow.

 

5. Keep It Cool

The more layers you wear, the warmer you are. That’s awesome for drafty buildings, but it’s horrible if you’re trying to stay awake. Seat yourself near that window that won’t close all the way and leave the coat at home. Staying cool and chilly will actually keep you awake longer.

 

6. Practice Reflexology

Small body movements that can be done at your desk or table can be lifesavers. One easy motion is correcting your posture by rolling your shoulders up and back and imagine yourself as if you were being pulled up by a string. Stretching your wrists by using your other hand to pull your palm gently back towards you is also effective. If all else fails, try the pinching method. It’s slightly painful, but there’s a reason why it works so well.

 

7. Maximize Your Nap Schedule

If it’s the afternoon classes you have trouble staying awake for, add a nap in your day. Try a NASA version, which is 26 minutes long and usually finished an hour before you need to be at your most alert. If that’s not plausible, just keep the nap under an hour. Any more, and you’ll go to class feeling even more groggy than before.

How Many Hours of Sleep Do College Students Need?

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Hours of Sleep in College

What’s the best thing you can do for your health, your studies, and your looks? Researchers pretty much all agree that the key is getting more sleep! But how much is enough when you’re busy with papers and building an awesome social life around campus? These sleep and health experts break down what you need to know about getting the best and optimal amount of sleep each night.

Take the Time

Dr. Neil Kline, D.O, DABSM and Representative for the American Sleep Association states that the best amount of sleep has been studied and proven. “According to the American Sleep Association (ASA) Sleep Statistics, college students need about 8 – 10 hours… [College students] who do not get enough sleep have impaired abilities to function optimally at school. Memory and concentration are negatively affected by Sleep Deprivation.“

Prepare Yourself for a Better Sleep

When sleep expert Terry Cralle, R.N. sent her college son to live on-campus, she sent him armed with the best sleep tools out there: “You can only imagine that I went way out of my way to provide helpful sleep products while he lived in a dormitory and later a fraternity house. Ear plugs, eye shades, mattress topper (and later a new mattress) and a white noise machine were mandatory.”

Avoid the All-Nighter Spiral

You may think that pulling an all-night study and cram session is a must before a big exam, but research has shown the exact opposite. According to Stuart C of Bedtime Bliss, “There have been many studies and experiments which have shown that while we sleep our brains process & consolidate our memories from the day. If you don’t get enough sleep it seems like those memories might not get stored correctly, not to mention that insufficient sleep impairs your cognition, your attention, and your decision-making process.”

Make It a Healthy Priority

The Freshman 15 is a hot topic for most incoming students. But did you know that much of your weight gain, along with other unhealthy habits, begins and ends with how much sleep you get per night? Jyothi Rao, M.D. states, “Sleep regulates our hormones which are associated with hunger and satiety. Not sleeping well can increase our cravings for sugar and make us feel unsatisfied even after a full meal.” She further suggests avoiding eating heavy and refined sugars during afternoon meals, which can make you more tired earlier in the day.

Pillow Talk is Important

Mike Lindell, the founder of MYPILLOW, knows all about the importance of the right pillow. He recommends selecting pillows that are hypo-allergenic filled (“Many college students don’t know that they can attract mild allergies that have gone unnoticed, and can be reacting to what’s in their pillow,” Mike notes) and only sleeping on those that are the right firmness. “If the pillow is too soft,” he explains, “it will not provide the proper support for your neck. If the pillow is too firm, it can lead to stiffness in neck and shoulders.”

Practice Good Sleep Hygiene

Almost every expert agrees that sleep hygiene is as important as brushing your teeth or taking a shower. Make a routine that encourages restful, productive sleep. For one, set up a sleep schedule and stick to it. It may be tough to set that alarm for the same time each and every morning, but you will feel better for it in the long run. In addition, set your timers for a screen-free, low stimuli time each night. Hide your phone or laptop away from you and avoid sleeping with the TV on. Instead, play some soothing, lyric-less music or use a sound machine to drown out the noise from inside and outside your dorm. You can even practice sleep meditations that can help you practice falling asleep faster.

Get Help When Needed

Sleep problems, especially those that keep you up each and every single night, shouldn’t be ignored, especially if you start to see negative effects on your schoolwork or relationships. Jamie Kopf, Berkeley Wellness Senior Editor and Health Expert, encourages, “College students who are struggling with sleep problems should check with their campus health center and find out if this type of counseling is available – especially if sleep problems are ongoing. Sleep drugs can help in a pinch but they’re only for short-term use, and they’re a band-aid solution; they don’t address the underlying problem.”

How to Sleep Well at School

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Many college students have trouble sleeping well while at school. With all the academic demands, extracurriculars, jobs, and a social life, getting the right amount of sleep is hard. And early classes only makes it harder. With a new semester coming up, students will have to get used to switching from a summer sleep schedule to one for school. Here are some tips to help you get back into the groove of school. With these tips you will not only be able to get plenty of sleep on a college schedule, but also wake up refreshed and alert. After suffering through waking up for 8am classes my freshman year, I used these tips last year and they worked wonders for me. I could get up early without the added anger at my alarm clock. It worked so well for me, that I decided to do a bulletin board on sleep in my residence hall last spring and the tips even helped my residents.

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1. Figure out what time you will need to get up – Look at your class schedule, and plan accordingly. Make sure you have enough time to accommodate your morning routine (showering, breakfast, exercise, etc.) when deciding a wake-up time.

2. Start early – Give yourself a couple weeks to adjust to a new sleep schedule. I would recommend starting at least 2 weeks before you go back to school. During the first week, start getting up a little earlier each day until you reach your goal time. And during the second week, wake up and go through a dry run of what you would do at school to make sure you have enough time to get ready.

3. Try to wake up at the same time each day – Establishing consistency in your sleeping patterns will only help in the long run. You will feel better each day, and waking up early won’t be a chore if you make a habit of it. So even if you have later classes two days a week, get up at the same time you would for your earlier classes. Do this even on the weekends. You can sleep in a little more if you have no where to go, but don’t give yourself an extra 2 hours. It will only make it harder to get out of bed Monday morning.

4. Eliminate caffeine and distractions before bed – Try not to have any caffeine after dinner and about an hour before bed, put down all the electronic devices and have some relaxation time. The bright lights of computers, smart phones, and TVs will keep you alert and awake and it will be harder to fall asleep. Use the time to shower, get in your PJs, or take some personal time to reflect on your day.

5. Sleep in even sleep cycles – You know how sometimes you go to bed and wake up refreshed and other times you feel terrible? The good feeling you get from sleeping happens when you sleep in complete sleep cycles. A sleep cycle is typically 90 minutes, so if you want to find the perfect time to go to sleep, start from the time you need to wake up and count backwards in 90 minute intervals. Any of those times are good to fall asleep, and you will wake up refreshed! Just make sure you are falling asleep at these times, not going to bed.

6. Put your alarm clock across the room – This will avoid snoozing or accidentally turning your alarm off. I learned the hard way after turning off my alarm and missing my first class! If you keep your alarm farther away, you will need to wake up and get out of bed to turn it off. In the time it takes to walk over, you will be more awake and less likely to go back to sleep. Just make sure if you share a bedroom with your roommate that (s)he isn’t terribly bothered by the extra beeps in the morning.

7. Try not to nap – I know one of my favorite words when I went to college was nap. But keep napping for toddlers. Napping can mess with your sleep and make it harder to fall asleep at night. Try to stay up all day, and soon you will start to naturally be tired around your bed time. If you absolutely need a nap, make it short – go for one sleep cycle (90 minutes) so you wake up refreshed but it won’t harm your sleeping patterns.

 

Why am I SO Tired? Defeating Dorm Room zZ’s

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Going away to college is a big change for everyone. Even returning students who are more familiar with their college responsibilities have problems adjusting to their new schedules at first. Feeling tired at the end of a long day of classes is pretty normal but feeling exhausted at all times can be a sign that something else is up.

Starting college takes a lot out of you. You’re meeting new people, walking all over campus, decorating, socializing and trying to lug all your books around new terrain. In addition to the added cardio, you have certain schedules that demand your time and attention. Learning to adjust to this schedule takes some time, and you need to let your body clock become accustomed to the new hours.

If after awhile you notice that you’re still constantly tired, take a look at the things you’re eating and doing. Your exercise and sleep schedule are either going to be your best friend or your worst enemy in terms of keeping you healthy and giving you energy. If you’re staying up late, getting up early and eating high-fatty foods, you’re more apt to be exhausted and weak. Eating the right things like fruits, veggies, protein and grains will give your body the strength it needs to keep you energized.

If you’re staying up late and getting up early, that’s a sure-fire way to keep you in a sloth-like state. Your body needs at least 6 hours of sleep to function normally, and you probably require more than that just to get you up, out of bed and ready to trek your way across campus for your 8 A.M. lecture. Your brain is so stimulated by your new environment that it’s pretty common for you to feel exhausted more quickly than usual. Once you start getting more accustomed to your campus and your surroundings, you’ll find a familiar groove that works for you. Go to bed early, and try to sleep with your TV off. Many people think that it helps them sleep, but what they don’t realize is that their quality of sleep is actually lowered with noises and distractions while they go through their different stages of sleep.

Your laptop, cellphone and TV lights could also be tricking your brain to stay up longer. Your brain sees these lights and thinks it’s day time. This delays your sleeping patterns and makes it harder for you to fall asleep. If you’re having problems falling asleep at night, detach yourself from all things electronic for at least an hour before you get in bed. This will help your brain (and eyes) relax and allow you to be at ease.

If you aren’t a very active person but still can’t seem to fall asleep and are exhausted the next day, try going for a long walk or run around your campus. Exercise is great for your mental health and will boost your confidence and release endorphins. This will help with your bodies natural body-clock that will help you have longer, more restful nights of sleep.

If all else fails and you’re going to bed early and eating right, you may want to see your local doctor. You could be anemic and need to take certain vitamins to help boost your energy. Make sure you tell your doctor your sleeping, eating and exercise habits so they can thoroughly assess when and why you’re tired. Your doctor may be able to tell you some tips to help you get a full night’s rest, or even find that you’ve been harboring a cold or sickness and didn’t know it. A few antibiotics and rest will get you back up and running in no time!