You’ve hustled all day. You made things happen, been to the gym/yoga sesh, connected with like-minded hustlers, eaten on the run, given social media your most inspiring self, called your mama, loved your partner, and ticked off today and tomorrow’s to-do list. You’re pumped.
So here you are. All buzzed up and nowhere to go… but bed.
But even after all that good stuff wearing you out, you still can’t sleep.
You’re going over exciting plans for the future and analysing the past. You’re lining up Instagram shots in your head and mentally editing your latest Facebook post. Your mind is all go and it doesn’t want to let go and exhale.
You want an off switch, but our bodies don’t have one. Alcohol is an easy way out, but it interferes with quality of sleep every time.
Fear not, babycakes.
There are many easy, nurturing and delicious ways of slowing things down. So that when you’re ready for sleep, it’s all yours.
You just need to give it time and wind it down in ways that feel really good.
Eat the sleepy stuff
Sleep starts with dinner. A good serving of protein, loads of cooked vegetables, a dash of grains (whatever your body can handle) and heaps of flavour without too much salt. That’s where it’s at. If you really want to nail it, fill your bowl with jasmine rice, cooked salmon and kale. All three have been linked to deep and deliriously good sleep. And if you want dessert, try a little yoghurt (full fat, preferably sugar-free and biodynamic) with a sliced banana.
Get a bunch of lamps
We all know to switch off screens an hour before bed, but don’t forget to dim the other lights of your house. If you’re an avid reader, get under the warm glow of a gorgeous lamp. Light some candles. Make a herbal tea. Breathe.
Pour your overflowing heart out
Quite often it’s the little things that keep us up at night… the emails we forgot to send, the grocery list bopping around in our head, the errands we need to do. Get a notepad and a journal, write down anything you need to do on the notepad, then journal your way through your day. Let it all out! Be honest and open and dig deep. Don’t judge what you’re writing, just release away. Here are some juicy journaling prompts if you feel stuck.
Make it dreamy
Your bedroom is a sanctuary. Make it divine. Hang up photos, prints or materials that make you smile and feel dreamy, not hustley quotes about getting stuff done. Save that for the office.
Soak it up
Take a bath or a shower with a drop of lavender oil, and when you’re done rub your body with jojoba oil from head to toe. Give your scalp the kind of amazing massage you’d normally get from a good hairdresser. Rub your feet with lashings of lotion. Throw on your favourite nightie. Make sure everything that touches your skin, from your undies and jammies to your bed sheets and blankets, are made from natural materials.
If you only sleep on one pillow under your head, consider whether you need to try a new pillow with extra neck support or have an extra one tucked between your knees (if you lie on your side) or underneath them (if you lie on your back). A good pillow – or two – can change everything.
Meditate before you medicate
It’s a bang-on quote by Danielle LaPorte: “Meditate before you medicate”. And it’s absolutely brilliant advice. Before you take a sleeping pill (even if it’s natural, even if it’s homeopathic or a Bach Flower spray), try meditation first. It’s so powerful at easing the busiest of minds into a deep sleep. My favourite is an app called A Chakra Meditation by Glen Harrold. He works through the chakras from the root up, and often I’m asleep before he hits the heart! Find one that you love (Insight Timer have some great guided meditations which are free) and press play at the end of a big day.
Find your ritual. Stick to it. When you don’t have time to do all of the above, do what you can. Even if it’s just two simple wind-downs before bed at the same time every night, your body will respond well.
But please, for your health’s sake, leave screens, the whole lot, out of the bedroom. They’re not just interfering with sleep, they’re shaking up your health in all the wrong ways.
Sleep well, angels!
photo credit: Lisbon Night via photopin + creative commons
Thanks for sharing…