By now you’ve probably heard that sleep matters. But do you know how get the quality and quantity of sleep your body needs? Here we talk about the art and science of sleep, explaining how you can leverage a good night’s rest to repair damage, combat inflammation, balance hormones, regulate mood, support good mental function, and more.

This week on The Living Experiment, we’re talking about Sleep — why it’s so hugely important, and how you can get more of the healthy sleep your body deserves.

After touching briefly on some science-y fundamentals, we delve into how you can get the kind of high-quality rest your body needs to repair damage, rebalance itself, and thrive.

We share insights about how to overcome important but little-known barriers to a decent night’s rest.

And of course, we offer you experiments to help you start sleeping better — tonight, and for the rest of your life.

“Sleep” Episode Highlights

  • First, a listener question: We weigh in on a married couple’s difference of opinion on “cheat meals”
  • Next, sleep: Why humans need it so much,  the importance of our daily circadian rhythms, and the negative effects of interrupting them
  • Daily habits that prepare you for a good night’s rest, starting with sunlight first thing in the morning
  • The effects of caffeine, alcohol, electronic screens, high-drama entertainment, light, and noise
  • The importance of a bedtime wind-down ritual, a lowered thermostat, and natural, breathable bedding
  • Tips for dealing with sleep interruptions and trouble falling back into sleep

Every week for one month, get into bed 15 minutes earlier. Notice if you feel sharper in the afternoon and less cranky in the evening.

1) Make a mindful pre-retirement ritual of preparing and slowly drinking a cup of herbal (non-caffeinated) tea while you get ready for bed.  Carry it around with you, sipping it slowly, noticing how the temperature decreases with each sip.

2) While drinking your tea, prepare your bedroom for sleep by eliminating all sources of light and making your space as calm, clear, and comfortable as possible.

Share the Love!

Have you told your friends and family about The Living Experiment? If you dig it, please do! Every recommendation from you means a lot.

We’d also love to have you connect with us on Facebook. Tell us about your experiments, and share your thoughts, stories and reflections there.