Getting a good night’s sleep in the summer heat can be a challenge. It takes some pretty innovative ways to keep your utility bill from breaking the bank by over using your AC and keeping comfy while refreshed. Too often we’re tossing and turning, our dreams are fractured and fuzzy, and we wake-up feeling less than our usual fabulous selves during the hottest months of our year — regardless of whether you’re in the Northern Hemisphere during that June through early October time or south of the equator from late October through to March. Heat is heat and finding your “cool and happy” place in it can be freaking difficult. So, we thought a quickie look at some truly quirky — and effective — tricks to getting delicious summer zzzz’s would be a nice change of pace and a good poolside/beach read.
The instant air conditioner
Ice cube tray? Check. Fan? Check. Table or small step stool to place in front of fan? Check. Put your ice cubes in front of the fan on the table, turn it on and you have an instant air conditioner.
Freeze your sheets
Winter time. Chilly. How to get warm? Lightbulb! Throw your sheets in the dryer for a few minutes, pull them out, wrap yourself in toasty goodness, fall into comfy slumber, and all is right with the world. Same theory here but in reverse. When the heat is too much, you can cool your sleep by putting your sheets in the fridge or freezer. And, no, DON’T get them wet first. They’ll thaw out and get you and the bed wet and then it’s just… squoosh! So, throw your sheets in the fridge or freezer for a few minutes, pull them out, wrap yourself in chilly goodness, fall into non-sweaty slumber, and all is right with the world. Aaahh.
Shower then buff it
Sleeping in the nude is nothing new. We’re adding a bit of a twist here, however. Take a tepid or cool shower, DON’T DRY OFF, and go into your fan-filled room — as in an electric machine churning the air in your room, not a place full of a bunch of people who worship you — slip under your breathable cotton sheets and drift away. Save the silk and satin for the colder weather, friends and neighbors. And pick the temperature of the shower that works best for you. Some people prefer hot showers in warmer weather. Whatever you like is whatever is best. Remember, however, that higher water temperature leads to steam and steam means humidity, which not only holds heat but can make your whole sleeping environment rather dank and uncomfortable.
HYDRATE (You knew it was coming)
Yes. Once again, we cannot impress upon you enough how important it is to hydrate — cool, cold water, lots of it, brings your own physical temperature down. Drink that lovely h20 down, people, and fill your body with electrolytes. If you’re a night sweater like some of us — not saying who — you’re losing precious minerals. Keep them in with a good dose of enhanced water, even invest in a small fridge for your bedroom so refreshing hydration is always handy and at the temp your body craves and needs in the summer months.
All are welcome in the light
Something that’s great about summer for getting your circadian rhythm in gear is the earlier sunrise. The natural light serves as a literal holistic wake-up call, and puts your body in gear for a better waking and sleeping cycle. Expose yourself to daylight as soon as you wake up. Get out and go for a walk, breakfast in front of a window or in your backyard — whatever you can to get in natural light. Your body will automatically sense when it’s time to sleep as the sun goes down and it gets later. Summer's abundance of natural light can be used as a way to right that wonky internal sleep clock that's been plaguing you throughout the year.
Be one with nature
Pitch that tent and get in touch with your natural side. Even if it’s your own backyard. Get away from all of the distractions and allow yourself to just rest, really rest. No blue light. No TVs. No phones. Just the celestial bodies above your head and you. So often it is way cooler outside than in where air is usually circulating and you can have some pretty vivid dreams in the wilderness.
Summer can disrupt in many ways — your hours are off because school’s out, you’re stressed planning vacations and travel, stifled by the heat, and on and on. But we believe you truly can embrace it by playing along and using some clever ways to get above it.
And sweet, cool, circadian rhythm loving dreams will follow. Delicious.