“Getting an Oura Ring really helped me validate what I had been feeling: my sleep sucks – even when I am in bed for a full eight hours.”

Monica works at a biotech startup and currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. She has been using Oura for over a year now, and she shared her story about having to adjust once she began sharing a bed with her partner. 

Monica’s Sleep Before Sharing A Bed

“I love my partner, but once we got married and started sharing a bed every night, it made me remember how great my past sleep was.”

Monica continues.

“Before I had to share a bed, I slept soundly almost every night, possibly because I was so exhausted from commuting across the Bay Area for college and work. I stayed up late (1am) usually 4 out of 7 nights a week (mostly procrastinating and scrolling on social media). Because I was depleting my body every day, I never had trouble sleeping by the time I got to bed. I never thought twice about my poor sleep habits in my early twenties because when you’re young you’re invincible and you have the rest of your life to figure it out, right?”

“I think the key reason I was able to abuse my sleep schedule for so long and not really suffer much was the fact that I slept alone, in my own bed, in my own room, in sleeping conditions that I chose for myself, every single night.”

But, during those years, Monica forgot to take into account one important fact: when she went to bed, she was alone. 

Monica’s Sleep After Sharing A Bed

Picture this: You woke up at 5:30am, got dressed, grabbed a banana, hopped in the car, sat in traffic for an hour or 3, got to work, worked until 6 or 7pm, sat in traffic again, finally got home, ate dinner, and, when you wanted to call it a day, you landed on another body after jumping into bed. 

If that sentence was exhausting, imagine how you and your body would feel after having to change your entire sleep environment or schedule. That’s exactly what Monica shares.

“When I met my partner and I had to *share a bed* things completely changed. No matter the size of the bed, I felt like I couldn’t spread out and have my own space – enough space (even though I’ve slept in the fetal position my whole life). I started becoming protective of bedtime and irritable if it started getting late. I knew I would not be sleeping right away, or through the night, once I got in bed, so I needed to correct for that lost sleep by getting in bed early. I was really scared of not getting enough sleep. And I often didn’t.”

After she had endured enough restless nights, Monica knew it was time to make a change.

“We were closing in on a year of marriage when I decided to make a bigger change, and my partner was very supportive of whatever I needed to do to get a good night’s sleep – that’s when I turned to Oura.”

Monica & Oura

“I got my Oura Ring around the end of September 2019, and though my sleep didn’t magically get better, Oura helped me see what I had felt all along: there was something seriously wrong with my sleep. I would either get only light sleep or be awoken really early and not be able to get back to bed.”

Sleep stats like these are what Monica saw during her early days using Oura.

“I didn’t love what I was seeing, but it made my exhaustion tangible and gave me numbers I could show to my partner if he was ever keeping me up or doing a bad job winding down. These stats were my motivation for change.”

And change is exactly what Monica started to do.

“Once I saw that everything from my heart rate variability (HRV) to my Total Sleep was not doing well, I started to experiment with different nighttime routines to see if anything could help me get some rest without having to get another bed. 

Giving myself more windows time helped a bit, but I’d still wake up in the night. Cutting down my nighttime water helped a bit with that, but it still wasn’t where I wanted it. But I was in luck after a visit to Costco.”

Oura user comfy blanket

“I found this blanket, and it was the softest thing I’ve ever felt, so I bought it. I didn’t think much of it at first besides that I wanted to sleep with it. So, I used that blanket that night and my partner used the comforter. The morning after, I had felt the change that I thought would be impossible. I felt rested for the first time in a while, and a couple months after that first night with Oura I had finally seen a great Sleep Score.”

Some Sleep Tips From Monica

1. Don’t hesitate to make changes, even if you share a bed with a partner. “Not wanting to get a separate bed (sad), opting for a separate blanket was a game-changer. Sure, it’s not always perfect, but it was exactly what I needed to start taking back my sleep and my space at night. I started seeing my Sleep and Readiness scores improve right away. Whether it’s because I’m less subject to my partner’s body heat or because I’m free of his serial blanket thievery, it’s working, and you should always feel empowered to find what works for you.”

2. The first step to making real change is staying in the know. “Oura is the first thing I check when I wake up and the last thing I check before bed. If I hadn’t decided to get my Oura Ring, I don’t know how I would have even begun to fix my sleep. It’s hard to fix something that you don’t know anything about. I could feel what my bad sleep was doing to my body, but Oura helped me see what it was doing. Understanding what was happening to my body gave me the push I needed to start making changes.”

READ MORE: Tips For Better Sleep

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