You’ve booked your trip. Your itinerary is planned. You’re bags are packed. But if you don’t get enough sleep prior to your vacation, everything is shot. You’ll either be too grumpy to enjoy anything or sleeping all day just to catch up. Here are 7 tips to get the proper night’s sleep so that you will be rested and enjoy your much needed time off to its fullest.
1. Don’t plan any activity for travel days
I once made the mistake of planning to attend two seminars on the morning of my arrival. Sure, I made it to the first seminar on time but I was so tired, I could barely keep my eyes open. I skipped the second one to sleep in the hotel.
No matter where you travel from Hawaii, you will always be crossing time zones. The better plan would have been to arrive one day earlier. Allocate that first day of vacation as a travel day and keep your schedule flexible so you enjoy the rest of your vacation.
2. Get proper sleep the week before you travel
This may seem obvious, but it’s actually really difficult to do unless you plan for it. One, there’s a lot of last-minute running around prior to traveling and two, you might be too nervous or too excited to sleep. That’s why planning is essential. As much as possible, try to get all your packing done and errands completed as soon as possible. Write down any concerns about traveling prior to going to bed so you can relax and free your mind to fall asleep faster. If you don’t have a regular bedtime routine, start one now. Wind down with a warm bath, a good book, or a gratitude journal. Refrain from using electronic devices that actually simulate your brain and keep you awake.
3. Rest when you arrive
Even if you took catnaps during your flight, you will most likely be very tired upon arrival. Check into your hotel and rest. If it’s still daytime, take a 30 minute nap. Anything longer may disrupt your nighttime sleep. If it’s night, turn in for the night so you’ll be fully awake the next morning.
4. Keep your room dark
Although I love the glow of city lights, I know I’ll get a better night’s sleep if I block out outside lights by drawing the curtains and turning off all the lamps. If you arrive in the daytime, be sure to bring a sleep mask with you so that you can rest in complete darkness.
5. Keep the room temperature cool
According to the National Sleep Foundation, the ideal sleep temperature is 65 degrees. Adjust your room temperature as close to 65 degrees as possible. Although this is much cooler for most of us from Hawaii, your body temperature is tied to your sleep cycle. As you get drowsy, your body temperature drops reaching its lowest point around 5:00am. If it is too hot, it may interfere with your sleep making you toss and turn at night. Some studies have linked some insomnia to improper body temperature regulation. Experiment with keeping your room cool to see what temperature is best for you.
6. Stay active
Take in the sights. Go on a hike. Have fun and shop. Visit an art gallery. Even if your primary objective is rest and relaxation, you will sleep better at night if you are active in the day.
7. Eat well
While it’s fun to try new foods while you’re on vacation, don’t load up on sugary foods and expect to feel good. Fuel your body with nutritious foods that will make you feel good all day long. And don’t forget to drink a lot of water so you don’t dehydrate.
Don’t stress while you’re on vacation. Don’t expect everything to go as planned. Be flexible when things go awry and you’ll have a better vacation.
Do you have any great tips to share on getting a better night’s sleep while you’re on vacation?