The time to “spring forward” is quickly approaching. Sunday, March 14, 2021 (also Pi Day and National Potato Chip Day!) will be the day to set clocks forward one hour and prepare for longer summer evenings with more sunlight during the day. While that is something to look forward to, losing an hour of sleep definitely is not. Here are a few ways you can get ready to adjust to the time change this year:
Get to bed earlier.
In the days leading up to Daylight Saving Time, begin your bedtime routine 15 minutes earlier and gradually work your way up until the day of. This is particularly beneficial for smaller children, who typically have a more difficult time adjusting to the time change.
Consistency is key.
Keep your sleep cycle more regular by aiming to wake up at the same time every morning, weekends included. While sleeping in is a short-term luxury, it can cause trouble with waking up and falling asleep during the week. It’s not a hard and fast rule to wake up at the same time every single day, but try to as often as possible – especially around Daylight Saving Time.
Enjoy longer evenings.
One of the biggest perks to springing forward is the opportunity to enjoy more sunlight. Open your curtains to let the natural light into your home and to help reset your body’s clock. Take walks after dinner without having to worry about rushing back before the streetlights come on.
Be careful with food.
It’s easier to prepare your body for bed when you eat dinner earlier in the evening and establish a cutoff time. Spicy or fatty foods, especially as bedtime snacks, can lead to insomnia and indigestion. Try to quit the caffeine earlier in the day as well to help yourself calm down when it’s time to catch some sleep.
Reduce your screen time.
While it may seem like a show or scrolling through your phone may help you to calm down, they actually stimulate your brain and make it harder to fall asleep. You don’t want to do anything that could add to potential grogginess from the time change, so aim to put the electronics away at least one hour before bedtime each night.
While it may take a few days to adjust to Daylight Saving Time, taking the right steps will help you adjust easily. It is possible to avoid groggy mornings when you have time to prepare! Work your way up to the time change, get ample sleep and enjoy the warmer days.