1. Exercise and eat well. Not news, but there are many benefits to eating balanced meals and snacks combined with exercise. One benefit is better, more restful sleep. However, big meals and major exercise are best completed prior to bedtime (minimum 2 hours).
2. Out with caffeine, alcohol and nicotine. Unfortunately (since I enjoy a good glass of wine or a tasty beer), alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine disturb the process of falling asleep and take away from the quality once asleep (even if it is used many hours earlier).
3. Set up a bedtime ritual. Establishing a consistent bedtime routine helps our brain systematically shut down for bed; like going around and turning off light switches. Also, keep the same wake up time (within an hour) every day.
4. Only use your bed for sleeping. When we watch TV or other activities in bed, our body associates these activities with our bed instead of sleeping.
5. Sleep in a comfortable environment. Create a sleeping area that is adequately dark and soothing. Eye masks, earplugs, and white noise can help.