How Well Did You Sleep Last Night?

Categories Featured, Health
sleep

Hi guys, today I want to talk to you about sleep, the importance of it and how much we all get. Most of us love to sleep, most of us also don’t get enough of it. Whether that be down to a busy schedule, working antisocial hours, babies, noisy neighbours or pure insomnia, I’m sure I’m in the majority when I say I’d like better sleep.  

Sleeping well is an important part of a balanced lifestyle. You all know that I love to throw the word ‘balance’ into my posts every once in a while. But it’s true. We often thrive on the idea of being busy, whether that’s actually being busy or appearing busier than we are to our peers. Looking busy, having no time, etc makes us look like we have stuff going on, we’re thriving! You know what really makes you thrive? Sleeping well and being on top form the following day to achieve all of those things you have going on.  

Insomnia 

I’m not preaching here. Sleeping is something that does not come easily to me. I’ve had chronic insomnia pretty much my whole life. Apparently, it runs in the family (thanks dad). Originally, I was going to include my insomnia history in this post too, but it got to about 1300 words and I hadn’t even got to the point of the post. I’d be happy to post that separately if that’s something people would be interested in? 

But, due to my insomnia, I’ve looked into almost every method of sleeping better that’s out there. Back then, nothing worked for me. But, as my natural sleep rhythm has improved as I’ve gotten older I’ve found that a few things do help me drift off easier.  

In the original essay post I was going to put up, I explained that since my early twenties my insomnia has been in a much better place. Back when it was really bad, I would frequently go days without any sleep at all. Now, I sleep more like a ‘normal’ human. And by normal, I mean sleep is something I do daily rather than twice weekly.  

So, how do I sleep now? 

Right now, my sleeping habits are the best they’ve ever been. To the average person, they’re still not great. But if you’ve ever suffered from insomnia you’ll understand me when I say this is quite the achievement.  

I currently sleep around 4-5 hours a night. The only way I can sleep is if I’m in a dark and silent room and I sleep very lightly. Hotels are a nightmare.  

After years of insomnia, late at night is now when my brain is the most productive. Meaning my sleep schedule is slightly askew with those of the average person. My 4-5 hours are usually 3am-8am.  I’m definitely a night owl, I’m not a natural early riser. I’ve always been able to get by getting up early because my body never required much sleep to function, but I would never naturally wake up at 5am. That’s more likely to be the time I fell asleep.  

So, we know that sleep is amazing and we all want more of it, but why should we be sleeping more? 

Why do we need sleep? 

Our body performs miracles when we sleep. It repairs things inside our body, including muscles. Blood pressure drops, energy is restored, you’re better rested for daytime function. That’s not to mention looking better the next day when you’re well rested. 

Even though I can sleep now, I’m always trying to find ways to make it easier. I’m happy with the amount of sleep I get, because it’s more than I ever have, but I would love to sleep deeper. I’m all about a better quality of sleep at this point, rather than quantity. 

sleep

Neuro Rest 

Recently, I was contacted and asked if I’d like to try a vegan sleep supplement. And by supplement, I mean supplement, this isn’t a sleeping pill. The ingredients are all natural and are supposed to help aid in you getting a better quality night’s sleep. The formula was developed by doctors, biochemists and nutritionists, so I felt safe taking it. 

What’s in it? 

The ingredients are broken down into three sections on the label, sleep quality blend, sleep cycle support and mental wellbeing blend. The sleep quality blend works to reduce fatigue and increase serotonin in the body. You know, the stuff that gives you that feel good feeling after exercise (and other things)? The sleep cycle support is supposed to help regulate sleep patterns, so you know it’s time to wind down. And the mental wellbeing blend is supposed to be calming and help you switch off.  You can read more about the purpose of each individual ingredient here 

sleep

Neuro Rest retails at £24 for 60 capsules, although can be bought cheaper if purchased in bulk. 

I thought as someone who has had major struggles in the sleep department, I would be a great person to test the product and see if it actually works. Welcome to my mini sleep diary. 

The instructions are to take one tablet for four nights and then one or two tablets every night thereafter. I tried two for a few nights, then switched back to one.  I’ve been taking them for just under four weeks now and I have actually noticed a few changes.  

sleep

Did I sleep better? 

Initially, it was so subtle I almost didn’t realise it was happening. I’d been taking the pills around a week and then I went through a phase of five or six days where I was really struggling to get out of bed on a morning. I’m sure that’s something that lots of people struggle with anyway, but as a light sleeper, I’d never really had issues there. It was only after a few days of having to force myself up that it dawned on me that I must have been experiencing a deeper sleep than usual if I was struggling.  

Too Sleepy? 

This realisation was very exciting for me. Then I did the unthinkable. I tried going to bed earlier. And by early, I still mean 1am. So, off to bed I went and I found myself drifting off within 30 minutes of going to bed. That’s unheard of for me that time of day. My next question was would I sleep longer or rise earlier.

Well, both, kind of. For the next week or so I was finding myself waking up an hour to two hours before my alarm, but able to sleep in a ‘snooze’ state until it was time to get up. Wake up at 6am, it’s too early, fall back asleep for 10-15 minutes, wake up, still too early, back to sleep and repeat this cycle until my alarm goes off and I have to get up. As I’d been semi-awake for a while, getting up was no longer difficult.  

Too awake? 

In complete shock that I was able to fall asleep at my ‘early’ bedtime, I tried to continue the routine for as long as possible. Last week, I would take my pill, do my skincare routine, get myself ready for bed (at 1am!?) and hope for the best.  

I was falling asleep almost instantly. Then, on Sunday (without an alarm) I woke up at 6:40am. On a Sunday. My natural body clock woke me up before 7am. And I don’t mean snoozey awake, I mean awake awake. I felt well rested like I’d had a good, deep sleep and I was awake that early. The next day, I woke up at 5:40am feeling the same way. Waking up at 5:40am was not something I wished to repeat, so I readjusted back to my usual bedtime.  

Perfect! 

Going to bed at 1am and waking up at 5:40am meant that I’d had the same amount of sleep that I usually get, but I woke up feeling like I’d slept more. Better quality of sleep achieved, which if you recall, was the actual goal.  

My usual bedtime had similar results, this week I’ve been waking up just before the alarm was due to go off, having slept for 5 hours (it’s been 5 rather than 4 most nights) and feeling very well rested when I wake up. My quality of sleep has definitely improved. Even though I’m not sleeping more, I’m waking up knowing I’ve slept well, which is something I never thought I’d say. 

I’ve found my experience with Neuro Rest very beneficial. I’m falling asleep faster and getting a more relaxed, better quality of sleep. 

What do you do to improve the quality of your sleep? Would you ever consider taking a supplement? And would you still like to see my insomnia story post? 

Until next time,

Sophie

See my handbag essentials for tired skin here.



*This post was kindly sponsored by Utmost Me. All opinions are my own.

28 thoughts on “How Well Did You Sleep Last Night?

  1. I’ve never had an issue with sleeping so long as it was silent and a completely dark room and like you im a light sleeper. But recently i was struggling to sleep due to anxiety and i’d be up for hours tossing and turning until i tried some herbal stress relief tablets which worked wonders but then after about a week they stopped working but now i sleep fine without them!

  2. This sounds like a really great product, I have usually been a good sleeper but recently have been waking up a lot this sounds really good, My boyfriend has insomnia so I know how hard it can be, hope it starts getting better for you xx

  3. This was really interesting to read. I’m glad the supplements benefited you and improved the quality of your sleep. Sometimes I struggle with sleep and if I’m too awake, I’ll have a long bath and try to relax. It’s great these helped you fall asleep faster too, it’s so frustrating when you go to bed and can’t drift off. Great post Sophie, thanks for sharing your experience <3 xx

    Bexa | http://www.hellobexa.com

  4. This sounds great! I need to work on my sleeping routine as currently, I could sleep for 13-14 hours and nobody has time for that. I also can’t get through the day without two cups of coffee so not sure what’s going on.

  5. This post was really interesting to me as I’m constantly tired. I wouldn’t say I have insomnia but I do struggle to finally drop off. And I always wake up before my alarm and can never sleep in at weekends. No matter the amount of sleep I get, I always feel tired the next day and getting out of bed for work is always such a chore. It’s great that these supplements seem to be working for you! The only thing that tends to help me drop off (though it doesn’t always work) is Lush Sleepy cream or something called Badger Sleep Balm that a friend bought for me. I’d be interested in reading your insomnia post by the way! Xx

    http://www.missblogsabit.com

  6. I have been struggling with sleep for a while so my recipe is:

    Fluffy socks
    Audiobook and or podcast (Harry Potter if times are desperate)
    Always have a big old glass of water because thirst keeps me awake
    Lush’s sleepy lotion on my chest and neck and wrists because I out my hands near my face when I sleep.
    Teddies (no shame)

    Hahah! Great post lovely

  7. Oh wow, I get a crazy amount of sleep. On average I get 8 hours, if I have less it slowly catches up with me.

    I have recently joined the gym and I go after work several times a week, that makes me so tired.
    Have you watched ASMR on YouTube? Some of those really relax me and make me sleepy. A few months back I kept having afternoon naps on the weekend and I would listen to airplane cabin sound – this is good if you can’t sleep when there is external noise – ambient sounds allow your mind to rest – I find anyways.
    I would also suggest trying to stay away from screens an hour before bed – reading a book should help 🙂

    Hayley | hayleyxmartin

  8. I would be interested in hearing about your insomnia story. I am a really fussy sleeping, I have got really bad habits too. It needs to be silent when I sleep, I mean silent. I have to wear ear plugs every single night, my boyfriend breathing next to me would be too much for me. Even if it is silent, I have to still wear the ear plugs because it makes me feel comfortable. After reading your review I really want to try these. I can get a lot of sleep, my trouble is falling to sleep and to quality of my sleep. I want to wake up in the morning feeling refreshed. I don’t want to wake up at 6am hearing my dad getting ready for work or wake up multiple times in the night for no reason. The ingredients sound really beneficial too. £24 for 60 tablets is a pretty decent price too!? Thanks for this, I am glad I read it! xx

  9. It must be horrible having insomnia. I absolutely love my sleep and feel like I can’t function at work properly if I get any less than 7 hours, a sleepless night is awful! Definitely not ready for children… It’s great the tablets helped you, definitely more about quality of sleep not how many hours!

    Laura at Palette of Thoughts // http://www.paletteofthoughts.co.uk
    xx

  10. It’s really nice to hear about your gradual success in changing your sleep habits and I’m happy the Neuro Rest suppliments have helped things move a little further in the right direction.

    A suppliment rather than a pill is such a novel concept and I think it’s a good idea!

    Would love a post all about your insomnia. It sounds like you have coped well with it but I would be interested to know the ways in which you think it may have impacted or impaired your quality of life.

    Insomnia is something I can identify with so you are not alone in this!

    Hanna x

    missbeautysaver.com | Bloglovin <3 

  11. Thanks for sharing your story! I agree sleep is so important. I feel like I either get an amazing sleep or a terrible sleep- there is no in between! Which can be a blessing or a curse. Awesome post Sophie! xx

  12. I think so many of us struggle to get a good nights sleep. I’ve even cut out caffeine… for the most part. 🙂 but my trouble isn’t falling asleep, it’s staying asleep!

  13. This was a really interesting read. I suffer from insomnia when my mental health is at its worst – it’s a mixture of overthinking and constant worrying. I slept fairly well last night but think I was just slipping into deep sleep when my alarm went off.

  14. Wow there’s no way I could survive on 4-5 hours of sleep! I struggled with sleep a lot when I was a child though and had to have this little lavender spray thing to try and help me sleep better. Nowadays I’m so exhausted from school and the gym I’m gone as soon as my head hits the pillow haha. Great post x

    Morgan // http://www.justmorgs.com

  15. Ergh, amen gal. I have suffered with insomnia for what feels like forever, but really badly for the past 4 years. I even considered sleeping pills but dodged it because I’ve heard so many bad things about them and how addictive they can be. I really must try this this supplement!

    http://www.whatevawears.co.uk

  16. I need to do a better job with sleeping. I’m guilty of having insomnia, I am usually very productive at night and have a harder time sleeping because of it. Supplements that helps you sleep better are great! Glad this worked out for you. I’ve used melatonin several times but it came to the point where I had to continuously up the dosage @__@.

    Nancy ♥ exquisitely.me

  17. Exceptional post however , I was wanting to know if you could write a litte more on this topic?
    I’d be very thankful if you could elaborate a little
    bit further. Bless you!

  18. Interesting post, I’ve never thought of trying supplements but it’s something I might consider when having a difficult week.
    I recently blogged about how I use essential oils to help me drift off into a deeper sleep, they work well for me usually but I think the idea of having supplements on hand for a particularly hard week is a good one.

  19. This is a great post. I always struggle to fall asleep in the evenings, my boyfriend gets into bed and falls asleep in seconds whereas I just lie there for at least an hour or so forcing myself to try to sleep. I usually have to start making stories in my head to help me get to sleep.

    Lovely blog.
    Chloe x
    http://www.chloechats.com/

  20. I never struggled with sleeping to be honest- most days I would actually end up oversleeping but since I have starting work and juggling blogging with means I only get around 5 hours of sleep every night which I Knew to professionals would be less haha but I feel is actually good enough for me!
    Thanks for sharing your experience, I’m sure many people who have struggled with insomnia would find this helpful! xx
    Beaulife.org

  21. I’ve been struggling with sleep a lot recently so I’m glad I’m not the only one. I can’t seem to shut my mind off again if I wake up in the middle of the night. When I was at uni it was the worst and I had to take sleeping pills. If I’d known about supplements back then I’d have definitely given them a try.

    Vicki | http://www.missviclb.co.uk

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