Mondays are hard enough without making things worse with lousy sleep on Sunday nights. But that’s exactly what an increasing number of people are experiencing as they try to squeeze as much fun as possible on the weekends.
Here’s what happens: You make big plans on Friday and Saturday that leave you wiped out on Sunday. So you sleep in–or even all day–to make up for the rest you missed. Then you can’t get to sleep on Sunday night, making Monday morning a nightmare.
Because you shifted your sleep schedule to include later nights on Friday and/or Saturday, it becomes difficult, if not impossible to get back on track for Monday morning. Your body performs best (and is able to access deep, slow wave sleep more easily) if you stick to a regular bedtime.
In a perfect world, you’d maintain the same sleep schedule every night–including weekends. But where’s the fun in that? If you do decide to stay up late, here’s how to escape social jet lag on Monday.
Steps to Correct Your Sleep Schedule
The biggest enemy of regular sleep is caffeine. We know, coffee is the sweet nectar of life and you can’t imagine functioning without it. Well, if you want to avoid social jet lag, switch to herbal tea this weekend.
Likewise, you shouldn’t overstimulate your system if you want to get a good night’s rest on Sunday. That means no eating or strenuous exercise three hours or so before you plan to sleep. Your body should be focused on getting ready to relax, not digesting a major meal.
Practicing better sleep hygiene is always a good idea. Make sure that your bedroom is a calm, peaceful and dark space at night. Put your phone in a drawer so that you’re not tempted to scroll all night. You can also try using a lavender diffuser or pillow spray.
Finally, you might consider taking 3-5 milligrams of melatonin. You can find this all-natural sleep aid in pill, chewable tablet or (our favorite) gummy form. Take melatonin about thirty minutes before bed, and you’ll find yourself drifting off with ease.