It’s early in the morning, but too early for the rest of the world to be up and it’s becoming apparent that my restful beauty sleep has concluded for the night – which has become somewhat familiar, but always discomforting.
What do I do with these extra hours? Mind you, lack of sleep is not at all rejuvenating or relaxing, so sometimes these extra hours often come as a stressor and not very ‘productive.’
In the past, these nights have left me cranky, exhausted, irritable, sensitive and stressed, which, to be frank, I’m quickly getting over!
Instead of being drab about the experience, I’ve decided to embrace it and make the most of these supposed-to-be-restful hours. Although computers and cell phones are easy temptresses, they are too stimulating for the wee hours, especially if there are hopes of dozing before the rest of the world wakes.
Here are a few methods I practice that have helped in the coping process of sleeplessness and to reign in on a more ideal sleep schedule.
- Meditate/Visualizing/Yoga Nidra/Breathing Techniques. One of the first things I’ve been doing lately is meditating when I can’t sleep. It immediately helps with any anxiety that is creeping in and at the very least puts me in a more positive, grounded, conscious state. I like guided meditations for the middle of the night because I don’t have to think. I can just listen and follow along and hopefully drift away while listening to the soothing voice of the guide… Visualizing helps manifest the things I am calling into my life (like this blog, my lovely & wonderful clients, opportunities for growth, etc…) Give it a try. Similar to meditating, breathing slows my heart rate and allows me to connect to my body more. Am I short of breath, am I breathing too fast? Once I become aware of how my breathing is and how I can control it makes me feel safe, comforted and very much in control!
- A little puff puff… Hey, it’s legal in California! Make sure it’s indica for the evening – think ‘in-da-couch or the ‘downer’. For those in the legal states, go to your local dispensary and ask for something specifically for relaxation. I got a pen labeled ‘sleep’ and so far it seems to be helping – I’ve heard CBD oil is great for this purpose, so it’s on my to-buy list. Stay tuned; as I will definitely give the 411 once I give it a try.
- Get out of bed. I’ve been going out on the couch or living room to meditate, read, write, stretch, listen to podcasts/books on tape, or try to sleep in a different room. The bed and bedroom are supposed to be dedicated for sleeping. Many experts express the importance of the bed/bedroom being for sleeping and not for other activities – minus the obvious fun one. In particular, try not to meditate in bed.
- Essential Oils. I invested in a couple diffusers and balms that I just looove! At the very least I feel calm with the relaxing aromas. Take a look here for the best essential oils for sleeping.
- Make yourself a cup of hot/warm non-caffeinated tea. Lemon, chamomile, ginger or another calming herbal tea. I find this very comforting and relaxing – which is exactly the point!
- Crystal power! While laying down, sometimes I will hold one of my large crystals. Whether you believe in them or not, they’re supposed to promote positive, healing energy to flow into the body as negative, obstructing and disease-causing energy flows out. Works for me!
And of course with anything, the bad advice that I don’t recommend but can’t say I haven’t tried…booze, sleeping pills, Nyquil & the like. Just don’t make a habit of these because dependency to stuff like this is not great and you are putting unnatural & toxic chemicals in your body that can have adverse affects.
So, if you’ve been having some sleeping issues like me, try these and let me know what’s worked for you or if there’s something else that I need to give a whirl. If you’ve been following my other articles, you’ll find The Dreaded Sleepless Night, which discusses getting to the root of not sleeping versus just coping in the moment.