Here's What *Not* to Do If You Wake Up in the Middle of the Night

Or you can kiss a good night's sleep goodbye.

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Dr. Michael Breus—a.k.a. the Sleep Doctor and author of The Power of When—has offered some tips on how to continue with your shut-eye if you happen to wake up before your alarm. Step 1: Don't go to the bathroom, unless you really, really need to.

Dr. Breus claims that by just sitting up in bed, your heart rate increases and disrupts the rate at which your heart should be beating when you sleep. For most people this is 60 beats per minute, but if you get up, your heart has to pump against gravity and therefore at a rate above 60 beats.

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In order to reclaim your unconsciousness, your heartbeat has to lower back to 60, which obviously won't happen straight away and is sometimes the reason why it's not always easy to get back to sleep.

Another tip Dr. Breus has shared is no matter how hard it can be, try to relax and make your mind go blank. Don't check your phone to look at the time. However instinctual it is. Seriously, put it down. Panicking while working out the amount of hours sleep left until the alarm goes off is a massive no-no too.

Breus adds that a lot of people—and yes, perhaps us included—have an irrational fear of not getting enough hours sleep, but advises not to stress about the hours slipping away.

Instead, he suggests relaxing, however impossible it may seem at the time, because if you start to get stressed about the ticking clock, you won't get any sleep at all.

He recommends switching off your thoughts and just trying to let sleep happen naturally, without the extra pressure of forcing it.

Sweet dreams for later.

Try this 4-minute meditation video to help you relax before bed.

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