Sunday 13 October 2019

Fourteen things to avoid if you want to sleep at Christmas

Hide the phone, avoid the coffee, take your earrings off... and other entry-grade bedtime awareness techniques from Shane Watson

Don’t run through your ‘to do’ list if you want to have a restful sleep. Stock photo
Don’t run through your ‘to do’ list if you want to have a restful sleep. Stock photo

Shane Watson

Sleep is very much on people's minds as you've probably noticed. All anyone seems to care about is getting a good night's kip, and now that we're in the countdown to Christmas, it's getting worse. Every time you look, there are more stats, more advice (cooler bedroom, less social media, blah blah) - all of which seems to us to be missing the point, which is it's getting to feel a lot like Christmas, ergo we won't sleep soundly until it's all over, bar the dump run.

So here are some tips (no guarantees) for getting a decent night's sleep over the next 12 days, maybe.

1. Don't drink an espresso after dinner...

...because you think the litres of negroni will cancel it out. It will re-ignite your negroni buzz and then add some action-craving edge. Also, the cold remedy thing has caffeine in it! Yes! That's why! We've only known this for a matter of months. Explains so much.

2. Don't lie there thinking I can't go to that party, that will finish me off

I can't do that lunch. Shall I drink at the lunch? What if I go to the party for half an hour? Oh God.

3. Don't come home from the party you weren't going to, at 2am, and have another drink

Any drink. The stuff in the decanter which is… could it be sloe gin? Never mind. The after party drink, whatever it is, will give you either the spins, indigestion or the sweaty-fevered sleep of the condemned.

4. Don't go to bed with magazines featuring inspiring 'countdown to Christmas' recipes

Or tips for making your own wreath, or 'personalising' your crackers, or pages of 'stocking gifts' that are mostly things like onyx-handled face rollers. This is (if female) an instant invitation to feelings of inadequacy.

5. Don't go to bed with your earrings/statement necklace on

That's like trying to sleep in a pineapple patch.

6. Don't accidentally leave the heating on

(Having put it on just for the post-party drinkies and then…)

7. Hide your phone under the clothes pile on the chair so you can hear it ring in an emergency...

...but not if your drunk friend starts WhatsApping pictures of her dog in a Rudolph suit.

8. Don't start running through your 'To Do' list the minute you turn off the light, just to be sure

Ham, mistletoe, wreath…

9. Don't lie there regretting the wreath

(Budget holly, not spendy noble fir, and roughly a quarter of the size of the neighbours'.)

10. Don't go through the present list

This is like making your own Brexit scenarios Venn diagram. So that is for Him or it could be for Him or Her (at a pinch) and if we three share that then I could give Them the thing I was giving Her. Never go there.

11. Don't suddenly think, 'where are those earrings I was going to wear?'

Where are those presents I bought in September? The 'where' questions….very self-sabotaging.

12. Don't leave your electric toothbrush charging in the corner, going blink blink

13. Don't resent other people zzzing like a baby next to you because they don't have a care in the world

Although, theoretically, your cares are each other's cares. His cares amount to... think, think. Oh yes. When to start chilling the cava.

14. Don't menu plan!

Not now! Not even a sketchy, "maybe hot smoked salmon on Christmas Eve?". Next thing you know, you're into the 'which day to buy the cranberries' scenario. Come on! This is just entry-grade sleep awareness.

Irish Independent

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