5 Simple Things You Can Do To Get Real Rest If You Keep Waking Up Tired After A Full Night Of Sleep

Stop accepting mediocre sleep.

Man laying in bed struggling to fall asleep. Pro-stock Studio / CanvaPro

There’s nothing worse than getting in your pajamas, turning on the fan, and going to bed at a reasonable time — only to wake up just as tired as you were the night before. It’s an experience many of us know far too well. 

In fact, 1 in 3 adults struggle with sleep on a regular basis, despite attempts at following a healthy sleep schedule. 

Like “mindset and mentality” Instagram page @liveyourimpossible says, “Sleep is a recipe for sober mental, physical, and emotional strength.” The post on Instagram explains that when you fail to get real rest, you're physical and mental well-being suffers. 


Luckily, if you’ve struggled with sleep recently, there are five simple tips you can follow to get back on a more restful routine, most of which start with caring for yourself during the day. 

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Here are 5 simple tips for getting real rest if you keep waking up tired, despite getting a full night of sleep

1. Create a feasible sleep routine and stick to it

When you have a busy life, sleep inevitably gets put on the back burner. Whether you're a full-time student, parent, or a workaholic, it can be difficult to find a sleep schedule that works. 


Even when you do take the time to set one, it’s difficult to stick to. Things come up, plans get changed, work piles up, and the first thing you sacrifice is likely a few hours at night. Although more than half of people admit sleep is “a priority” for them, according to an NPR study, 65% of them are not getting the recommended eight to nine hours of sleep.

Not only is setting a solid sleep schedule important — you should plan to sleep and wake up at the same time each day — but what you do in the hours before bed is just as impactful. Studies recommend avoiding screens, including your phone, for at least an hour before you go to bed.



Other experts suggest following the “10, 3, 2, 1” rule during the day, to prioritize a set sleep schedule at night. “Ten hours before bed, no more caffeine. Three hours before bed, no more food or alcohol. Two hours before bed, no more work. One hour before bed, no more screens, phones, or online media.”


So set out your comfy pajamas, lower the heat, grab a book — and most importantly, change your mindset to prioritize your sleep before anything else. 

2. Hydrate when you wake up

If you don’t already, make sure to keep a glass of water at your bedside. Not only is it the savior to waking up thirsty in the middle of the night, but it can also give you a kickstart to hitting your daily water goal in the AM. “Normalize drinking two glasses of water — every morning,” @liveyourimpossible wrote. 

5 Simple Things You Can Do To Get Restful Sleep If You Keep Waking Up Tired Photo: Ari Roberts / Pexels


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Drinking water in the morning has more benefits than you can imagine, from better skin and hair to an improved metabolism and boosted immune system. It also helps to flush out toxins and eliminate morning grogginess.

So, if you’re constantly waking up too hot or tossing and turning all night — you might just be dehydrated. A simple fix like investing in a water bottle or setting a “water alarm” throughout the day could be much more effective in curing your insomnia than you realize. 

3. Manage your diet — in a way that works for you

Tweaking your diet can be the key to unlocking increased energy in the morning, even with simple changes like timing your meals. A Johns Hopkins study revealed that making a few simple shifts to your daily routine and eating habits can dramatically increase your chances for a restful night’s sleep.


First, they recommend cutting out alcohol, as research shows that healthy people drinking it fall asleep quicker and enter “deep sleep” faster, but those effects wear off quickly. 

“When alcohol wears off, it can wake people during very important and restorative stages of sleep,” they wrote. “If used regularly, [it can] increase your likelihood of sleepwalking, sleep talking, and memory problems.” Swap alcohol for tart cherry juice at night — like a “sleepy girl mocktail” — to promote restful sleep, without sacrificing your fun evening drink. 

Other research suggests that eating spicy foods before you go to bed can increase the chances of experiencing heartburn, sleep apnea, and irregular temperature regulation throughout the night. So, avoid spicy foods a few hours before bedtime. If you’re hungry, eating “complex carbohydrates” like oatmeal or whole-wheat toast can be a great swap, as they release the “sleepy hormone serotonin and don’t take long to digest.” 

Cutting back on sugar and caffeine can also help you get that extra uninterrupted sleep. 


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4. Prioritize moving your body during the day

While tons of Americans acknowledge the benefits of exercise, it can be difficult to introduce it into your daily routine. Let’s be honest, it’s intimidating! When we think of exercise, we’re immediately hit with the anxiety of a gym or the overwhelming nature of putting on a “workout outfit.”

However, sleep experts admit that sleep benefits from even the most basic body movements, including things like yoga, short walks, and even somatic exercises while lying in bed. 



Liz Tenuto, known as The Workout Witch on social media, shared several “somatic exercises” that promote restfulness, including slow movements that are accessible to people who otherwise would pass on “traditional” exercise. 


5. Dedicate time to relaxing in the evening

There are a number of tips, tricks, and techniques that people can adopt into their pre-bedtime routines, some of which start in the early evening. Nighttime mocktails, calming meditations, journaling, reading, and de-stressing practices are a few of the widely adopted pre-sleep activities. As @liveyourimpossible put it, "A calm mind falls asleep with ease."

There are also some simple tricks for people who don’t have a great deal of time to dedicate to “unwinding,” including a one-minute mindfulness relaxation ritual from wellness coach Jess Michelle.    


“First, say ‘I am ready to let go of all the negative energy and stress from my day’ out loud," Michelle explained. "Then, visualize actually releasing that negative energy from your consciousness. I like to tap my head or rub it lightly while I think about this.”


Along with several other relaxing rituals, her quick night-time routine allows for a deeper, more restful night's sleep. 

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Zayda Slabbekoorn is a news and entertainment writer at YourTango focusing on pop culture analysis and human interest stories.