Vacations are the time when we can take a break from the daily stress, anxiety and pressure points such as pre-set timings for waking, sleeping, school bus, trains, work deadlines etc. This freedom from time bound activities itself is refreshing and stress relieving. Those who want to perfect their sleep schedule, vacations are the best time to do it.
As throughout the year we all are busy trying to keep up with the clock and create a balance between family, household chores, and work.
Regularity is the Key: During vacations most of us tend to wake up close to the normal wake time without alarms due to our circadian cycle. The thought of not waking up to alarms and having a morning ritual to follow creates a sense of serenity within you. These early vacation mornings are a gift you can give yourself, with kids still asleep you can indulge in things you always wished for but couldn’t due to other priorities.
In this "Me" time you can read, listen, or watch anything you desire at leisure in your bed or simply just sit in the garden and inhale the morning breeze with a hot cup of tea/coffee.This way you unwind and relax while maintaining regularity of wake-sleep-time. This aids in building positive sleep hygiene.
Soak in some sun: On working days our body is by default exposed to sunlight however during vacations kids and adults may spend most of their daytime indoors either sleeping or just lazing around in the house.
The best way to maintain the body clock is by increasing its exposure to sunlight during the day. So during vacations plan an outing with the family, play an outdoor sport with friend(s) such as cricket, badminton, swimming, go shopping, or for a leisure walk with friends in the park. When you are outdoors having a good time you are not only soaking vitamin D but also aiding in setting the body clock for your sleep routine.
Indulge responsibly: Vacations for most of us is the only time when we can binge on our favourite tele-series and movies to make-up for all that we missed due to work.The light emitted from all kinds of electronic screens not only strains the eyes but also hinders any attempts of perfecting a sleep hygiene. I’m sure you’re thinking if not watch TV then what should one do during vacations as there’s so much time and so little to do. The solution here is to engage in activities that interests and excites you for example pick a different game every night that you can play as a family, try cooking some new cuisine, join workshops that interest you such as art, dance, acting. This way naturally your screen viewing time is limited without taking the fun element out of your holiday.
Normally we reserve the eating out, partying, and drinking for weekends however during vacations everyday feels like a weekend because of which we splurge on junk food, late night partying, and drinking. The wise men have said that "All is well when done in moderation", so satiate all your cravings but keep a tab on how much, and when. For example if you’re having a drink, make it small and savour every sip slowly. This way you fulfil your vacation checklist without compromising your health and sleep.
By following the guidelines and tips mentioned above you can have the best of both worlds i.e. a well spent vacation and a perfected sleep hygiene.