Sunday, February 16, 2014

Sleep deprived?

Are you sleep deprived?  So tired but the minute your head hits the pillow, your mind starts to race through every scenario from your day, worries start filling your head, anxiety sets in. You watch the clock, growing more anxious to get sleep, but not a wink of sleep.  Maybe you fall asleep easily but wake constantly?

I have some advice. There was a time I survived in 3-4 hours sleep every night. I was up, on Facebook at 3am chatting with my fellow insomniac friends. (This is a big no no) 

Then I started to do yoga. In my yoga journey, I took some teaching classes and learned the value of pranayama. Controlled breathing. This breathing not only helped me quit smoking, it taught me to sleep. 

In quitting smoking, I went through the breathing motions of how I breathed when I smoked, only, without the cigarette. It worked! (For more on quitting smoking, see my post in how I quit smoking). 

For learning to sleep better, I breathed as though I was asleep. Deep long breaths. I can put my head on the pillow and be asleep in 60 seconds. My husband is amazed at how soon after I hit the pillow, that I'm out like a light. 

Some other tips are, get off the internet an hour before you want to be asleep. Two is better. Don't perk at Facebook, check your texts messages. Shut the sound off!  My phone has an emergency setting. My spouse, kids and sisters are the only ones who can text or call me after 7 pm. All other calls and texts don't even light my phone. I'm on do not disturb. I'm not a doctor so there's no reason, outside of my family emergencies, that I need to be reachable after 7pm. 

I wake up early EVERYDAY! I enjoy being up before most of the world. It's peaceful.  It's rare I'm awake at 9pm and I almost never make it to 10pm. I'm up at 4. Sometimes 3:30. Crazy, maybe, but it gives me time to reflect, and relax before I start my day. 

I look at Facebook in the morning, and the same people, who are on all night every night, are up complaining that they can't sleep. Of course, they are stimulated by Facebook. Yet that's where they spend their night.  Chatting with other insomniacs, keeping each other awake. 

There are safe natural supplements  that can get you started on a routine of sleeping at night  make sure you choose something that is not addictive and start with the lowest dose, on a night you don't have to wake early and rush out. 

My best advice, and it helped me, I hope it helps some of you...



*Eat right

*Don't eat two hours before bedtime, drink a glass of raw milk if you need something in your stomach (this helps me)

*stay off the internet, avoid calls and text messages (no peeking) 
At least one hour before you want to be asleep, shut down and read a book. 

*breathe as though you are sleeping. Watch someone sleep and mimick their long breaths. Lay still on your back in corpse pose, close your eyes and breathe. 

*wake early everyday. Your early may not be my early but pick a time and wake up every single day at that time. Even on weekends. 

If you must have background noise or tv running, put on something comforting and boring and turn it down very low (Your local weather channel, not the storm stories one lol) 

This may not help you immediately. Your body is in the routine of fighting sleep. You have to wean yourself back into a healthy nights sleep. 

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