Each month, the National Sleep Foundation is partnering with select bloggers and digital influencers for a new iteration of the #GoodNights challenge. We’ll explore new ways to get a good night’s rest by showcasing real life examples of how a good night’s sleep can positively impact your body, mind and spirit. We know that many of our readers want real life tips for sleeping better, so follow along and share your own #GoodNights stories by using hashtag across social media channels like Twitter and Instagram.
March’s Sleep Challenge
During our recent Sleep Awareness Week, we asked Stacy Risenmay of Not Just a Housewife to utilize the National Sleep Foundation’s healthy bedroom tips to help craft the perfect sleep environment.
For nearly a week, Stacy and her family used the National Sleep Foundation’s healthy sleep tips — here’s what she had to say in our exclusive Q&A:
Describe your sleeping habits, both before and after taking the #GoodNights challenge. Would you say you are/were a “good sleeper”? Are you a better sleeper now?
Being a mother to young children plus being a full time blogger, I am used to getting very little sleep. I try to limit the time I am on the computer during the day so I can spend time with my kids which means that the bulk of my work happens after they go to sleep. Add in making time for my husband, and you have a recipe for a sleep deprived mom!
I was actually very excited to take part in this challenge because I knew that I could do a better job managing my time but never felt a big push to do so. Change is not my strong point. This challenge forced me to make better use of my time so I could go to bed an hour or two earlier.
During the #GoodNights challenge, did you make any changes to your sleep routine?
I really didn’t expect the sound machine to work. I thought it would be annoying and keep me up. I was shocked! I fell asleep faster that I normally ever do. I did have to keep in on the lowest setting but it completely helped.
The blackout curtains were great as well. I have only ever had sheer curtains. We live in the country so it gets pretty dark at night. Again, I questioned if it would be helpful. But I slept deeper than I normally do.
Normally when my husband gets ups, followed by my oldest son, I wake up and never fully go back to sleep. I basically lose and hour of sleep before my younger kids wake up. Now I sleep like the dead until the younger kids wake me up. It is glorious.
What was the best part about the #GoodNights challenge?
The challenge gave me a reason to try to do better. It gave me a push to make much needed changes.
Did you have any problems with the challenge? For example, did you find it tough to avoid electronics before bed, or did you have trouble cutting out caffeine in the afternoons?
The hardest part for me was going to bed earlier. I don’t drink alcohol or caffeine or eat spicy food before bed, but I do watch TV with my husband and blog on the computer. So not having any screen time right before bed also was hard.
Did you feel that your sleep improved throughout the challenge?
I have no doubt that my sleep improved. I fell asleep more quickly and I felt more rested the next morning.
Do you see yourself continuing the patterns and behaviors set during the challenge?
I kept telling myself that when my youngest was in school (next year!) that I would finally get some more sleep. That was my excuse. But really I just needed to not spend as much time on Facebook when I should have been doing other things.
I was able to manage my time better which just goes to show that if you really want something, you can make time for it.
Now that I have had a week’s worth of awesome sleep, I am hoping I can keep these good habits going.
We love the images Stacy shared of her made over bedroom, below.
Check out Not Just a Housewife for her views on our #GoodNights challenge. She’s also helping us with a great giveaway – a queen-sized Serta Perfect Sleeper mattress set! You can enter below or on her website!