How is your sleep right now? How about your kids? Are you playing a round of evening whack-a-mole every night? That is what I call the 15 things kids ask for or need right at bedtime including but not limited to water (which they didn't drink all day long and now all of the sudden they need desperately), a blanket, no blanket, to pee, to poop, more water, to pee again, a stuffed animal you threw away 3 months ago, the window open, the window closed, the closet door open, the closet door closed, to pee and for the love of GOD more water. If you play this game then you need the book Go the F@$% to Sleep by Adam Mansbauch. But if this hits a little closer to home, as in, hemhem, it's you that needs all of those things or your list looks more like: load the dishwasher, research next years vacation, check the to do list, write an email, stalk your high school boyfriend on facebook, like 20 peoples posts, take out the trash, drink water (which you haven't had all day so you decide to double down and have 2 glasses while your at it), play whack-a-mole with your kids, watch training videos from professional soccer players, pee, recheck your email, accidentally reopened facebook, lost 30 minutes of your life you will never get back, pee, watch Law and Order, pee and then finally turn your light off, and pee one more time, then this post is for you.
The process of falling asleep is complicated and a neurological wonder. We literally lose consciousness...on purpose! For half of your day! Well, some people get half a day, the rest of us get 6-8 hours if we are lucky. Either way, the ability to fall asleep is no less awe inspiring than being born in the first place. But the process of getting there can be long and hard. Here are some handy tips.
Turn off your screens at least 1 hour but preferably 2 before bedtime. Blue light signals our bodies that it is daytime and instigates the process of waking up. It messes with our circadian rhythm and can make the process of falling asleep extremely difficult. Not to mention all the mental activity screens encourage. Evenings should be for shutting it down and allowing the body to naturally fall into sleep.
Diffuse lavender oil every evening in your bedroom. Not only does it smell amazing, it helps you to fall asleep. The key to using essential oils is to use them consistently. Essential oils are a vibrational medicine and we entrain to their frequency. That's how they work!
Meditate. This has amazing benefits for every aspect of your overall health and that has been proven in hundreds of scientific studies and yet, most Americans still do not practice meditation and even fewer meditate in the morning AND the evening. Even a 10 minute meditation can drastically change your ability to fall asleep and increase the quality of sleep you get.
Don't be a mouth-breather. Close your mouth. Seriously. Not only with this help you snore less which will be great for your relationship, it helps with the microbiome of the mouth which ties directly to our overall immune system and wellness. Sleeping with our mouths open has been linked to anxiety and stress, so closing your mouth can lead to deep breaths which activates the vagus nerve and the vagus nerve is CRUCIAL to just about every major organ system including a major connection to our neurological wellbeing.
Snuggle. Have you noticed that snuggling shows up in lots of my posts. Because the act of snuggling opens our heart chakras and connects us with our higher selves and all beings. An open heart chakra leads to less illness and a higher quality of life and wellness. So snuggle up. Live alone? No problem, get a snuggly animal like a dog or cat (I don't recommend fish or lizards) or they even come in the stuffed variety and you can choose any animal you like.