SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4) – We’ve all heard how sleeping affects our bodies and life, but that doesn’t make it any easier to get.

A lack of sleep could have a variety of factors. For instance, you could be stressed or overworked or simply have insomnia. It could feel impossible to get good, quality sleep every night—even if you wanted to.

But there are ways to help you get more consistent sleep.

You’re stressed when you go to sleep

Stress hurts more than just your sleep. It can give you headaches, put strain on your muscles and organs. It can even weaken your immune system and make you sick! Like sleep, stress is personal to the person experiencing it, but meditating and exercise are good steps to improving your overall experience. The MayoClinic also suggests:

  • Getting regular physical activity
  • Practicing relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing, meditation, yoga, tai chi or massage
  • Keeping a sense of humor
  • Spending time with family and friends
  • Setting aside time for hobbies, such as reading a book or listening to music

You’re getting overworked

Similar to general stress, being overworked could cause anxiety and an overactive mind that won’t quit before you get to sleep. Not only should you consider a guided meditation to steady the mind (a five minute one works if you don’t have time for more! Even a few deep breaths can do wonders on your state of being), but also consider taking on less. While that’s easier said than done, it’s also okay to say “no” when you’ve already got enough on your plate. It will help you create boundaries in your life, and it may even improve your work performance because you’ll have better focus on the tasks already assigned to you.

You’re traveling

Traveling is exciting in itself, but depending on where you go or what activities you have planned, there’s a chance you’ll get little to no sleep. It’s possible, this traveling is once in a lifetime, and you’ll get back to your normal sleeping pattern when you’re home. However, it’s also possible you’re one of those people who travels consistently, like for work. To get better sleep, WebMD suggests:

  • Reduce stress beforehand
  • Plan for sleep
  • Wear loose fitting clothing so sleep comes easier
  • Stay hydrated
  • Eat well
  • Move your body (it’ll help you sleep later for longer!)
  • Bring things that help you sleep (i.e. a book before bed, your favorite blanket/pillow, etc.)

Sleeping well while traveling means you need to establish a routine. That way, sleep can come easier. For instance, if you need to sleep when you hit the pillow every night, only sleep in your bed, don’t read or watch television. Maybe you like a shower before you sleep, so do that every time. Maybe it’s something else entirely, but by keeping a routine, your body will have certain expectations for future sleep.

You may be eating too late

When you eat too late, the parts of your body that are normally slowing down and resting while we sleep, are moving and working, which can stress out the body and make sleep that much harder to obtain. Studies have shown that eating too late can increase blood pressure, increase blood sugar, create changes in your metabolism, and increase weight gain. Cone Health suggests eating two hours before you go to sleep, and if you are still hungry before bed, have a light snack, like yogurt, fruit or veggies.

You’re inability to sleep can have a variety of factors. Talk to your doctor if the problem persists.