Skip to main content

How to beat stress for a restful night’s sleep

Is your brain ‘switched on’ at night as it tries to work through the worries of the day? Stress can cause your body to release cortisol and adrenaline, hormones that speed up your thoughts and heart rate. The result is often trouble drifting off, and lighter, more fragmented sleep. Find out how stress affects your body at night, and discover ways to relax before bedtime.

A man stretching his arms in bed whilst he talks to a woman.
A man stretching his arms in bed whilst he talks to a woman.

Try mindful breathing
Find a peaceful, comfortable place to sit, close your eyes and bring your focus to the aspect of your breathing, such as the movement of your rib cage. Observe how thoughts can pop into your mind, but also how you can choose to focus on your breath instead. Do this for 10 minutes while taking deep, calming breaths.

Face your feelings
Negative emotions can be overwhelming before bedtime. Emotion defuse is a technique that involves learning to describe your emotions as they arise, in a matter-of-fact, non-judgemental way. For example, ‘I feel anxious and have a tight knot in my stomach.’ Practise for 10 minutes a day or whenever you need it.

Changes you can make to your day to sleep better at night

Include lots of storage in your bedroom to help keep it uncluttered for a less stressful environment at night

Aleedawaty Abas, Bedroom Sales Leader at IKEA UK and Ireland

Create an oasis of calm
A relaxing environment is important for unwinding and getting a good sleep. Stick to a limited palette of soft shades in your bedroom, and combine with ash-coloured wood and natural, earthy-hued textiles.

Explore bedroom ideas and products

Take time to relax
Going straight from running around at full speed to lying down in bed isn’t a recipe for happy sleeping. Try to switch off and prepare for sleep by doing a relaxing activity that you enjoy, such as reading, having a bath or listening to soothing music.

For more sleep inspiration and tips on how to improve your bedroom environment, visit our dedicated sleep hub.