Sleep is the best meditation.– Dalai Lama
In our jam-packed culture, sleep seems to take a seat behind the hustle of packing in as much as possible each day. More than ever, many of us have trouble falling asleep and staying asleep, while others experience insomnia as an ongoing issue. If this is the case for you, please seek medical help from a trained professional.
Sleep is as important to our health as eating, drinking, and breathing. Sleep allows our body to repair itself, our brain to reset, and also is key for our entire wellbeing. Most of us need between seven and nine hours of sleep each night.
When a good night’s sleep consistently eludes us. Our wellbeing is negatively impacted.
- Fatigue, irritability and daytime sleepiness
- Potential for weight gain and difficulty losing weight
- Contributes to symptoms of anxiety and depression
- Elevated blood pressure and increase the risk of diabetes and high blood pressure
- Decreased immunity which opens the door for health issues
- Decreased mental focus, problem solving and creativity
Here Are Some Sound Sleep Tips:
Stick to a daily routine
- Set a schedule for going to sleep and for waking up. This balances your internal clock, keeping everything else in check
Get natural light daily
- Melatonin is a naturally occurring hormone that is controlled by light exposure which helps regulate sleep and wake cycles known as “circadian rhythm”
- Keep the blinds and curtains open during the day at home and office if possible, to let natural light in. Get outside during the daytime for a dose of “organic” light. Use a lightbox during winter months if you live in a climate that is overcast and cloudy
Avoid bright screens 30-60 minutes before bedtime
- Studies show when our eyes are glued to screens our brains are stimulated which makes falling asleep when the lights are turned off a challenge
When it’s time to sleep make sure the room is completely dark
- Cover up any electronics with a glowing light. A naturally, dark room signals both brain and body it’s time for sleep
Turn down the heat or turn on the AC so your room is cool
- The best temperature for sleep is between 65-67 degrees. A warm or hot room interferes with sleep quality
Limit caffeine, alcohol, and nicotine use
- Do so especially during the evening as you approach bedtime as these interfere with sleep
Get moving every day
- Regular exercise increases sleep quality and duration while reducing stress
Here Are 6 Natural Sleep Remedies:
Take this over the counter supplement as an aid in falling asleep. Melatonin is a hormone produced in the body that regulates sleep/wake cycles. The best source of melatonin is the light and sun of mother nature. The next best option is to take it as a supplement. Always seek the advice of your doctor or pharmacist for the best safety tips before taking these
Use this lovely essential oil, combined with a carrier oil, directly on your body or as a diffused spray for use on your pillow and bedding for its ability to assist with relaxation and allow sleep
This is an herbal supplement in pill form that may help to improve sleep, promote relaxation, and reduce anxiety. Check with your doctor or pharmacist before taking it to make sure this is safe for you
Try a soothing cup of this herbal tea which is known for its ability to aid in relaxation. Try other non-caffeinated herbal teas if this one does not appeal to you. There are many bedtime-labeled teas available at your local market or online
Doing some gentle, intentional breathing prior to bed releases the day away and opens your body to greater sleep by opening your heart and lung passageways, increasing oxygen flow. To get started, sit upright placing one hand on your belly and the other on your chest to feel your breath moving. Next, simply inhale softly from the belly, up through the top of your head, and exhale the breath slowly back down into the belly. Repeat this breathing sequence three times. Notice how you feel now.
What’s not a better way to soothe and end a busy day than with some intentional calming meditation? All you need is a comfy, distraction-free place to sit silently and be in the moment. If you are new to meditation and enjoy the convenience, use an app, online audio, or a video to gently guide you into lovely calm, while releasing all that took place for you as you focus on a restful sleep
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