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At the end of my ideal day, I take my super-relaxed self back to my bed, pull back the covers, crawl between a set of smooth, clean sheets and lay my head on a lavender-scented pillow.

With a smile on my face, I ease into a great night’s sleep.

7 Simple Ways to Improve Sleep {+ an Organic Sheet Set Giveaway}. Enter at
Does this always happen? Um, no. In fact, that this happens at all amazes me after so many years of battling insomnia. Thankfully, though, it was my sleep challenges that inspired me to find natural, simple ways to improve sleep.

The following ideas have helped immensely, making my insomnia a thing of the past. My husband even claims that I frequently fall asleep before he does now (which I still have a hard time believing – the man can fall asleep in minutes anytime, anywhere, no matter how uncomfortable it is).

I hope these suggestions help you as much as they’ve helped me.

1. Take a quick shower

If I’m sticky, whether I worked in the garden, exercised or just took a walk under the hot summer sun, I can’t sleep. So it’s best to do a quick rinse off before bed. This gets rid of the sticky feeling and, as a bonus, cools down and relaxes the body so it’s easier to get to sleep.

And if you slip between the sheets, snuggle in and realize that you’re sticky, do yourself a favor and go take a quick shower. Just last night I tried to ignore the stickiness and it took forever to fall asleep.

2. Use essential oils

There are so many essential oils you can use to calm down and ease into a restful night’s sleep. You can either dab a drop onto your forehead, chest or the back of your neck or spritz it on your pillow.

  • Lavender is well-known for calming and I highly recommend using it on yourself and your kids before bed.
  • Alternate it with cedarwood, an essential oil with calming properties that also keeps away bed bugs (be sure to pack that stuff when you travel).
  • If sleep is really hard to come by, mix a drop of wild orange with a drop of vetiver essential oil. This powerful combination might be just what you need.

3. Create a bedtime routine

Make a bedtime ritual that you enjoy so your body knows it’s time to wind-down and go to sleep. Turn off all screens, including your phone, at least an hour before you go to bed. Apply calming essential oils. Try to go to bed at the same time each night.

4. Have a little snack

Don’t go to bed with a growling stomach (this book explains why). If I’m feeling pretty hungry before bed, I’ll have some apple slices with cheese or peanut butter (I aim for a sweet/salty combo with some fat and protein).

5. Embrace the darkness

If you’re sensitive to light, take measures to keep your room darker. I love curtains that block the light and my sleep mask was one of the best investments I’ve ever made.

6. Make your bed

I’m a little “princess and the pea” when it comes to my bed. If my bedding is even the slightest bit askew, I grumble a bit, get out of bed, rip off the covers and make the bed so everything’s nice and smooth.

I’ve had enough restless nights due to funky covers to know that it’s worth the two minutes it takes to make my bed to get up and do it.

7. Be picky about your sheets

My husband and I are frugal minimalists. But. We’re all about high-quality items. We choose not to spend our money on certain things so we can afford products we’ll love that will last a long time.

Like our sheets. We like soft sheets that don’t get too hot, but that aren’t too slippery either (like these ones). And we’re willing to pay more for a nice set of sheets (and, for a long time, we just had one set that we washed weekly – now we have two).

And be sure to clean them regularly, even if you just shake them out mid-week. Because there’s not much more annoying than climbing into bed after a long day and finding that your kids were playing in your bed and now it’s all crumby. Yuck.

Enter to win an organic sheet set at shalom mama

Organic Sheet Set Giveaway

Speaking of sheets, how would you like to win a luxurious set of organic sheets?

Yeah, thought so.

This week, I’m giving away an Organic Sheet Set – size of your choice – courtesy of the wonderful folks at My Green Mattress (go read their story – I love it – and I also love that they, too, have four kids).

They sent us a set of queen-size organic sheets for us to try before the giveaway and oh, my goodness. I love them! They’re neither too hot, nor too slippery and feel oh, so soft.

I’m so excited for the lucky winner who will get their own set of sheets!

To enter, follow the instructions in the widget below – it’ll tell you what you need to do.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

What tips do you have for improving sleep?

* This post has been sponsored by My Green Mattress and I received a free set of sheets to try before the giveaway. All opinions are my own and I’m happy to recommend this great company.