Sleep apps are a godsend if you're an insomniac, but they often don't get to the heart of the issue. Sure, breathing exercises are helpful, but they don't fix what's causing your sleeping problems in the first place. That's why you need the Shleep app and a cartoon sheep named Shleepy.
The Shleep app, which is free for Apple and Android owners, starts with a questionnaire about your sleeping habits: How much do you sleep on a weeknight? And on a weekend? What situations make you feel sleepy during the day (ie. attending a meeting, watching a relaxing movie, or sitting in a car/train/plane/bus)? What do you want to get out of the app (ie. more sleep, better quality sleep, or more information about sleep)?
Once you answer all of Shleepy's questions, you get a personalized Shleep Score. Your rating is out of 100 percent, with 100 being the best. You also get a star rating for three categories: how much you sleep, how well you sleep, and your sleep environment and habits.
Then, you watch a set of free videos that are tailored to your specific sleep needs and narrated by sleep coach Els van der Helm, PhD, who also happens to be the founder of Shleep. You can check in on the app daily and log the previous night's sleep. The goal is that over time you'll watch your sleep improve, whether it's the amount of sleep you get or the quality. Eventually, you may not even need the app anymore and you can wave goodbye to Shleepy the adorable cartoon sheep.
Using the Shleep app is a great way to identify your bad sleep habits that are hindering you from resting peacefully. Even if the app doesn't work for you, figuring out what's keeping you up at night is key to getting more or better sleep in the future. So, this time we're giving you full permission to use your phone in bed.