Eight is the magic number here friends. Eight hours of sleep is the recommended amount for the average, healthy college student. Let me tell you, boy is this accurate and I am the BIGGEST advocate of actually obeying this suggestion. As someone who woke up before a majority of the birds did back in high school due to dance team morning practices, I never imagined myself as someone who would be sleeping past 8am duding the weekday. Ever. I arrived to nanny this summer around 7:15 every day and sure I sleep in a tad on the weekends in the summer, but my internal body clock was set pretty darn early Monday-Friday. However, college is a whole lot of change (who would’ve guessed?!) and my summer self who attended orientation thought 8am classes sounded like a GREAT idea!!!! My Friday college self who didn’t have class until noon, begged to differ.
First semester is all about finding out who you are and as I said, a LOT of change, so finding out that I needed a little more sleep at this point in my life wasn’t too surprising. Now that second semester is here, I have a pretty good routine and schedule figured out that works best for me so I figured I would share a few of my own personal tips and secrets if you will!
make your space comfortable + cozy // I got my bedding for college over a year in advance (typical over-planner of myself) but when I saw it in a PBTeen magazine (my literal weakness, now that I think of it, I really need to get a subscription sent to my dorm..) I knew I absolutely had to have it for college. It is just a bright pink with matching pink pompoms adorning it and despite the unrealistic embellishments (can’t even count the amount of pompoms that have been lost due to my aggressive waking up/bed making) I still love it just as much as when it was purchased! I also have this weird thing for fleece tie blankets and have two on my bed as well but honestly use them more often wrapped around myself almost like a cape for utter comfort (I am 18, this is still comforting.) As far as pillows go, I have an assortment, but quite honestly never end up using any when I actually sleep. I always end up tucking my arm under my head and somehow can ONLY fall asleep this way. However for lounging purposes, I totally use plenty to prop myself up from my top bunk spot. Top bunk also means no one can really see my bed (which has made motivation for making it daily slim to none…), and so I don’t really use any decorative throw pillows (as fun as they are to shop for 😦 next year!) But, next year when I will be living at the sorority house, I have already verbally claimed a bottom bunk spot in my 4man room with my pals, so decorating AND actually making my bed will be slightly more essential next year!
aromatherapy// THIS STUFF. My grandma got me this pillow mist a few years back and I am finally running out of it (I don’t use it every single night, mostly because I am forgetful.) The Lavender and Chamomile Pillow Mist is everything when it comes to falling asleep quickly and comfortable. It’s seriously as easy as it sounds too! You just spray a few squirts onto your pillow (I also give my childhood teddy bear and blanket a good mist too…) They have a Lavender Vanilla scent too that seems just as appealing and I may have to try that one once my current bottle is fully out. It is beyond worth the $12.50 and works wonders. My friend and I jokingly call it “sleep sauce” because seriously guys, this stuff will put you to sleep when you think counting sheep is nearly impossible for the night.
stick to a schedule // I know things come up and plans change and some nights call for more studying than others, but try your best to stick to a within an hour schedule. The earliest I have class this semester is 9am and the latest is 10am so I usually wake up between 8:15 and 9:00 depending on the day! I am a pretty early bird when it comes to bedtime too (basically I am an old soul and am finding this out more and more as I get older…dinner at 4pm you say?) Usually getting to bed around 10:30/11 is my goal.
do something to wind down// I will admit that I am fully guilty of bringing my phone with me to bed. I like to claim it is just for my alarm, but I have also been guilty of the typical social media scrolling. Lately I have actually REALLY been into reading the free downloadable books on the books Apple app…which admittedly, still isn’t winding down. Try to avoid screentime before you sleep as much as possible. If you MUST use technology, the “night shift” feature Apple recently applied to the iPhone is EVERYTHING! I use it honestly during the non-night hours as well simply because it is better for your eyes than the harsh blue light. I also downloaded a feature on my laptop that kicks in at a certain hour of the night as well so my eyes aren’t kept awake longer than they need to be! As for non-techy winding down: read a book, journal (my favorite option), or even do some yoga or meditating before you hit the hay. Not only will this help you fall asleep better, but it is SO good for simply the overall health and fitness (yes, that’s a thing!) of your brain!
go to bed clean// take!! your!! makeup!! off!! before!! bed!! + wash your face. + exfoliate. +moisturize. + if my mom is reading this she is going to text me saying take your own advice Allison. But seriously mom college has taught me a lot and I am doing all of this without you asking me if I did every single night. (tough love, she means the absolute best, and moms are annoyingly always right about this kind of stuff.) But all mom lectures aside and the advice coming from the fairly lazy once 10pm hits college student: makeup wipes = essential. Costco size amount of them = essential. Buying them when your parents are in town because they’re actually hecka expensive = highly recommended. Now I went to an all girls high school as you may know if you’ve been reading here for awhile, so a large amount of makeup isn’t really in my daily routine, but even taking off the daily sweat and grime (because it is currently 80 degrees in February while I am typing this outside????) is so relaxing and makes going to bed feel even more accomplishing.
That’s about all for my sleep talk today! Do you have any nightime rituals? Leave a comment below or shoot me an email @ firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d love to chat!
Until next time, xoxo, Ally