How The SHINE Method Could Be The Remedy You Need To Get Quality Sleep

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Jun. 21 2024, Published 8:10 a.m. ET

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Around 10,000 times a month, UK residents search for the phrase “tired all the time,” indicating a widespread struggle with achieving restful sleep. To combat this issue, the specialists at Mattress Online emphasise that the path to better sleep actually begins with establishing healthy morning routines.

Mattress Online also spoke to expert cognitive behavior therapist, Toby Oliver, and Cavendish Cancer Care Wellbeing Manager, Chloe Angus, about completely improving your day with a well-planned morning.

A rough morning can be as detrimental as a restless night. Whether you wake up ruminating on yesterday’s events or struggle to leave bed altogether, avoiding the day ahead hampers productivity. This pattern fosters daytime dread and nighttime anxiety. Yet, you have the power to break this cycle.

The benefits of a productive morning routine:

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Calmness – Taking a moment for yourself early in the day allows you to reflect on yesterday, and this calmness helps foster a sense of control over your day ahead.

Focus – Preparing for the day helps you gain clarity on your tasks and take on the day with better intentions.

Energy – Sorting a plan for the day takes the stress out of tasks which could otherwise wear down your mental energy.

Productivity – Setting yourself up with the confidence to tackle challenges will help you work more efficiently.

Wellbeing – Slowing down to appreciate your surroundings can help you develop a greater sense of purpose.

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Get over the first hurdle by getting out of bed.

It can be daunting whenever we try to form a new routine in life, and this can feel especially tricky when the first step requires leaving the cosiness of your bed. To help conquer this hurdle, experts from Mattress Online suggests considering the following:

  • Why? What is motivating you to start a new morning routine? Setting intentions is an important step in forming any new habit.
  • Be realistic: Consider your time and environmental constraints. Planning to go to an early morning yoga class that you know you don’t really have time for will only make you feel bad for ‘failing’ when you miss it. Why not try following an at-home routine and starting off in small steps
  • Start small: Again, overreaching can lead to unnecessary feelings of disappointment in yourself. Start with quicker or more manageable tasks, you can always build on them if you find yourself benefitting from them.  
  • What do you enjoy? Starting a new morning routine should be all about your own wants and needs, so pick an exercise, no matter how small, that you know will bring you positive energy for the day.
  • Go with the flow: Try to complete a morning activity every day, but don’t beat yourself up if you need to do it later in the day or skip it altogether – be flexible.
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Let sunlight in as soon as you can after waking.

Stanford University says that getting some sunlight exposure soon after you wake up can help to set your internal body clock.

This light exposure is even better if you can get outside for it – time outside in the natural light helps to naturally regulate your circadian rhythm, and prompts your body to start producing the ‘sleepy chemical’ melatonin. Beginning this process early in the morning puts your body at the right stage for sleep when you get into bed at night.

The New Expert SHINE Method

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Expert cognitive behaviour therapist, Toby Oliver joined forces with his sister Kate Oliver to outline some effective morning strategies in their bookRise and Shine: How to Transform Your Life, Morning by Morning. Within the pages, they highlight their best morning routine techniques by grouping them into the SHINE method:

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This group of techniques is all about finding some calm in order to reflect on the day ahead. It will help you feel more centred and ready to take on the day ahead.

One way to achieve this state is by practising your breathing. Try the finger breathing technique, a form of self-hypnosis which helps to regulate emotions and calm anxiety.


By starting your day on a positive note, you are likely to feel more resilient to the day’s challenges.

Begin by practising positive affirmations to create feelings of happiness. Write down some affirmations for the day ahead, making sure that they are focused on attracting good outcomes rather than avoiding negative ones. Be sure to keep them in the present tense, and remember to speak them aloud with conviction.

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Knowing what you want to achieve for the day can help you stay focused and avoid becoming drawn into negative thought patterns.

To achieve anything it is important to have a plan, and your plan for the day should start when you first wake to the sound of  your alarm clock. It’s important to maintain a healthy routine with alarm: pick an alarm sound that is softer, so you are not jarred awake, and try to set it as close as possible to the time you need to get up. Avoid battling with the snooze button for an hour, it will only leave you feeling more tired.


You can only look after your mind when you first look after your body, so it’s important to have a healthy morning diet – no skipping breakfast!

Give yourself time to enjoy and appreciate your breakfast – rushing your meal isn’t good for your body and doesn’t give your brain time to enjoy the food. Similarly, mix up your breakfast menu! Most people don’t have the same thing for dinner every day, so make your mornings more meaningful by planning new and enjoyable breakfasts. If you’re not used to eating in the mornings, try building up your appetite gradually by first introducing fruit or light snacks.


Getting up and getting moving is the best way to give yourself energy for the day ahead. This will help regulate your circadian rhythm so that by bedtime, you are ready for lights out and won’t be tossing and turning.

Fit movement into the time you have – a quick walk around the block is more manageable than going to the gym, but can still offer some of the same great well-being benefits. Always listen to your body and don’t overexert yourself. If you’re not usually one for morning exercise, pop some encouraging notes around the house reminding you why you are doing this.

This article originally appeared on Your Coffee Break.

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