With the holiday cookies and new year’s champagne behind us, it’s time to get serious about that resolution. Whether you vowed to eat more vegetables, drink more water or finally get that whole gym thing down, there may be one thing standing in your way.  

We’ve all experienced the emotional mess that stems from not getting a good night’s sleep. Quality sleep can be a major deal breaker when it comes to will power, exercise recovery, and even the ability to digest and utilize food.

Although there’s no exact link between weight gain and sleep, scientists believe we have diminished control over our emotional regulation when we’re tired. You’re more likely to give into impulses following a night of poor sleep, making it that much harder to keep your resolution. Sleep deprivation leads to the inability to use our prefrontal cortex, allowing our rewards system to take control of decision making (hello entire package of oreos).

This year, set a goal to get at least 8 hours of quality sleep each night, so you can crush those new year’s resolutions.

Power Down

Like most things in life, sleep health is about quality, not necessarily quantity. Sure you may have gotten your 8 hours in, but if you’re scrolling through IG or watching the new season of Black Mirror, you’re probably not getting the highest quality sleep. You already know blue light from LED screens can affect your sleep, but did you know it can have a negative impact for up to a full hour before hitting the pillow? Turn phones and computers to night mode at least an hour before bed, or grab a traditional paperback book instead of squeezing in one more episode.

Black Out

The smallest light, like the one from your clock, can stop you from getting into long, deep sleep cycles. Close the blinds, keep the TV off and grab an eye mask to maximize your time in REM (deep) sleep.

Wind Down

Make a conscious effort to make your room a sanctuary. Dim the lights, turn off the TV and spark a candle or two. The bedroom should be your number one place for some distraction-free relaxation.

Instead of blaming your will power for eating that donut (or two), consider how other factors like stress and sleep might be playing into it.