How To Go To Sleep
Of the many challenges I have helped clients overcome, insomnia or sleep problems is the most common. Fortunately, this is also one of the most quickly resolved concerns. With a few adjustments to person’s routine, a good night’s sleep can be had again. Sure, there are medications that can help but if you try these steps for 4 weeks, you’ll find yourself experiencing better quality sleep and better able to engage in your world.
The importance of a good night’s sleep can never be emphasized enough. Our body has the natural ability to rejuvenate and heal from all sorts of problems and good quality sleep is paramount for strong emotional, physical and mental health.
When you are sleeping, your magnificent brain is working on the many levels in which we exist. By this I mean, the parts of us that think and talk and interact with others and the parts of our body that operate without our thoughts like our heart, liver, stomach and other major organs. While you sleep, your brain is taking in all the information you learned from the day and digesting and “filing” it, so that new information is added to your understanding of people around you and your environment. This allows you to make better decisions so you meet those demands. Poor sleep can lead to “foggy brain” or difficulty with concentration and focus. Ever feel like you have a “short fuse”? This can occur when the brain hasn’t had enough time to repair itself, file away the information that’s needed and discard the information that isn’t. With an overload of information, you may be short tempered with others when you are without good quality sleep.
On a physical level, your brain is sending information to your vital organs so they can repair and release any viruses or toxins in the morning when you urinate. The development of many chronic ailments is related to poor sleep and so a good night’s rest will bring you good memory, clarity and better physical health.
Sleep is a natural part of our bodies’ rhythm. The greatest ingredient in your ability to have good quality sleep is discipline. Consider this metaphor – if you want big juicy muscles, you go to the gym, right? You know that those muscles need to be worked out so the layers of muscles can begin to develop and the more regularly you go, the quicker you’ll see results. Sleep is similar in that the more discipline you have, the better your body will reward you with a juicy, relaxing and fulfilling night’s sleep.
· Have a Sleep Schedule
For your body to operate at its peak performance rate, your circadian rhythm needs to be in synch with your daily activity. Find a wake time and sleep time that works most days of the week and stick with it.
· Have a Sleep Routine
Get ready for bed one hour before bedtime so your body can wind down. Begin by washing your face, brushing your teeth, comb your glorious hair, have a glass of golden milk or soothing tea. Turn off your TV and listen to relaxing music (435hz such as chakra sleepy time music available on YouTube), nature sounds or white noise will work too.
· Meditate or use breathing exercise
The goal here is to continue to wind down your mind and body. Practice a 3 minute meditation or slow breathing through your left nostril. Hold one finger to close your right nostril and then breath slowly through the left. Do this for 3 minutes with long, slow breaths. This helps to activate your parasympathetic nervous system which activates relaxation.
· Lights out and get cozy
Get under your covers and notice how wonderful it feels to be relaxed and ready for sleep. If that isn’t your initial though then find that thought or feeling in you. It’s in there. Envision your self having a solid night’s sleep as you begin to relax, letting go of thoughts and moving into a relaxed mental space that is without words
· Take Naps
Think about sleep as you do your appetite. If you know you’re going to have a great dinner, you know that eating beforehand will effect your appetite, right? Just as we need to let our appetite increase before a meal, we need to let our sleepiness increase before bedtime. Napping will reduce your sleepiness and make it harder to stick to your bedtime schedule.
· Lots of Stimulation Before Bed
Limit TV and other screen time. Our bodies are very sensitive to light rays as they activate our brain to be alert and remember, we want to increase sleepiness.
· Go to Bed on a Full Stomach
Avoid eating less than 3 hours before bed and limit water and fluids too, as your body will need time to digest them.
· Drink Alcohol or Anything Sugary
While alcohol may help you fall asleep faster, your sleep will be restless as the alcohol is being metabolized. This can lead to middle of the night waking and tossing and turning in the bed.
· Stay in Bed if You’re not Sleeping
If you’ve been in bed for more than 15 minutes and you are not sleepy, get out of bed and doing something mundane and in low lighting like fold laundry or read a relaxing book. You want your brain to associate deep relaxation or pleasure with the bed so Only Sleep and Sex in the bed!
There are many ways to address sleep problems and it is best to discuss with your doctor. These tips will be helpful for many people with short term sleep problems. Please consult with a doctor if you continue to have sleep problems or if you are getting less than 5 hours of sleep a day.