How to Make Sleep Great Again

Sleep. For some people, that word evokes positive emotions—you can't wait to climb into bed at night, cuddle up on your favorite pillow, and drift into a land of happy dreams. For others, it's stressful, tumultuous, and full of nightmares or terrors.

I'm the former. I love to sleep—it's my favorite time of day. To me, there's nothing better than climbing into bed (read: my oasis) at the end of a long day and taking a breather, surrounded by a comfortable mattress, dreamy soft sheets, and lavender essential oils.

For Josh, it's the latter, as someone with often nightmares and a serious sleep talker. Josh and I have definitely had some adjusting to do over the years when it comes to how we sleep, and how we set the right environment for us both to sleep soundly, through the night.

I've learned a lot about sleep (and setting the right environment) over the years, so I wanted to share my favorite tips for those of you out there who can use a better night's rest:

  1. No tech zone, please!

    I think this is my favorite thing about our bedroom: we don't keep our devices in there. Josh and I both used to sleep with our phones next to our heads, and in the past year, we bought a charging station to keep on our desk (outside of our bedroom) where we dock all of our phones and computers.

    This doesn't mean we've never brought our devices into our bedroom. In fact, sometimes we do bring in a laptop to watch a show or plop down on the bed after work to catch up on the news and scroll through our Twitter feeds. But turning them off and docking them at a certain hour (~9 PM) and having the freedom to instead, sit in bed, journal, read, or talk to each other (what a novel concept!) has been really great for us.
  2. Invest in the good stuff.

    I am someone who can't sleep in hotel rooms if the linens aren't perfect. Yes, I am that girl. I've learned over the years to bring my own pillow case when I travel, and that it's a worthwhile investment to buy nice sheets, duvet covers, and pillows.

    My favorite brands right now for sleeping essentials are Serena & Lily, Calvin Klein Home, Casper, and Parachute. P.S. I've linked my favorite bedroom essentials below!
  3. While you're at it, get a good PJ set!

    Don't just stop at sheets—what you wear to bed matters just as much! I like to say that how you wake up in the morning sets the tone for the rest of your day. If it's disheveled, messy, and rushed, you can bet your day will follow suit. But if it's happy, positive, clean, and bright, here's hoping your day is, too. A great pajama set can help keep you calm, cool, and collected all night long.
  4. Keep the room cool and dark.

    We have minimal lighting in our bedroom, and it's one of my favorite things about it. The room itself gets a ton of natural light during the day, so it's not entirely necessary to have a bunch of other lighting. And, when it gets dark, it's really nice to have dim lights that give off a very calm vibe. We also try to keep a window cracked in there before bed, so we get some fresh air circulating and a little breeze to help keep the room nice and chilly.
  5. Try new things, and find what works for you.

    For Josh and I, we knew we had problems with Josh staying asleep all night. So, we tried out different solutions—like night time tea, a diffuser with essential oil blends, and a noise machine—to find a solution that works for him. We actually use all three now and have our diffuser going all night with an EO Products blend for nighttime, plus a sound machine making ocean sounds in the background. Both seem to be working for him!