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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UC Riverside chapter.

Getting a good night’s sleep has always been a problem for me. When the severity of the pandemic hit around a year ago, I struggled terribly with being able to fall asleep at night due to my overthinking and stress. My sleep schedule was at its lowest and I vividly remember not sleeping once for more than a day and the frustration was aggravating. I noticed it really took a toll on my mental health and as someone with a lot of anxiety, my mind never stops racing before bed which makes me stay up until the latest hours. I tried my hardest to find different ways to help improve my sleeping schedule and routine and I finally found a few activities that I believe to be helpful and wanted to share my experience. 

teacup with flower and book page
Photo by Debby Hudson from Unsplash
For one, cutting down my caffeine intake played a big factor in improving my sleep schedule, so I tried to make a cut-off time to no longer drink coffee later in the day, as I realized it only made me jittery and even more anxious at night. Instead, I try to drink water or a cup of tea, preferably Sleepytime Tea or chamomile, every night before bed in order to help calm me down. 

Photo by Ellieelien on Unsplash
Another tip I found helpful to relieve my stress before bed was journaling. I cannot stress enough how much journaling before bed has helped me feel much more relaxed before bed. Overthinking is in my nature and I found that jotting down an entry of my thoughts was beneficial in improving my nighttime routine. Most of the time while I’m journaling, I’ll turn on my lavender-scented candle or light incense to make the energy in my room more mellow. 

I had already heard about melatonin supplements or gummies to help people sleep better, but I was always hesitant to try them because of mixed reviews on their effectiveness. After being tired of getting no rest, I finally gave in and purchased melatonin pills. The ones I bought are the Natrol Melatonin strawberry-flavored, chewable tablets and they immediately and surprisingly helped me knock out faster. I would definitely recommend it to anyone looking for melatonin supplements since I believe that these were quite effective and life-saving for me. 

The last thing that became a big aid in improving my night before bed was purchasing a galaxy projector for my room. As cheesy as it is, every night before bed, I turn on my blue projector and end up feeling so mesmerized and relaxed by staring at the stars on my ceiling. I will admit that it is a bit extra, but I found that it makes the overall atmosphere and environment of my room so much more calm and comforting. 

Following and trying out these things definitely consisted of trial and error and it did take a while for me to be able to finally develop a balanced sleep routine. Regardless, I hope that these tips can be useful to anyone who is also struggling with sleeping at night or would just like to make their bedtime routine much more enjoyable and alleviating. 

Jasmine Aguirre

UC Riverside '21

Hi! I'm Jasmine (Jay) & I'm a 4th year Media & Cultural Studies major. I aspire to communicate through written word, in hopes that we can all learn something along the way & I love sharing all of my interests. I have a huge passion for anything music related, as I want to someday become a music journalist.
Deedee Plata

UC Riverside '22

20 year old creative writing major with a love for skincare, representation, and art. When not laying down and watching cartoons, I can be found working on my novel or browsing through baby name forums.