30% of the general population complains of sleep disruption. We all ‘know’ how important sleep is to all aspects of our energy, but many of us don’t actually follow through with prioritising quality of sleep around our day to day lives.
On a scale of 1-10, where do you fall on how far you prioritise sleep? If you really think about it, what do you do to ensure your sleep is satisfactory?
Something I have always found fascinating is that some people see sleep as an indulgence. This is likely to be a hangover from parental and societal values around productivity. In a society that tends to value ‘output’ over all else, this can often get in the way of our wellbeing.
If you want to improve your energy levels, now is the time to give yourself permission to make sleep a priority. Try to make this your focus for the next two weeks to begin with, and watch your energy soar! You’ll be more productive, alert, and healthier in your body and mind.
Here are some tips to help with your sleep revolution.
Create your Sleep Sanctuary
Turn your bedroom into a sanctuary of calm. Sit on your bed, look at your room, and ask yourself – how do I feel? If your response isn’t restful, calm, or at ease, you need to make some changes. This may take a Sunday to sort out, but it is worth it. Clear your surfaces to the minimum, create beauty in the way your ‘bits and pieces’ are arranged, make sure every thing has a place – and put it there!
What is it like to be in your bed? Do your sheets feel nice? Have you got a good pillow? It is worth making an investment here if you need to. Aim to feel comfortable, supported, peaceful, safe, and generally cosy.
This sense of calm and comfort will help signal to your body that it is time for sleep.
Wind down. This means allowing your brain some downtime before you go off to bed. If you have an active mind, you probably need to stay away from conversations and anything stimulating for at least an hour before you get into bed.
Melatonin is the hormone in our body that regulates our circadian rhythm, so our bodies know when it is time to sleep. Melatonin levels start to increase about two hours before bedtime, helping to maintain our regular sleep pattern. If we go to bed at different times then we miss out on this natural support our body gives us.
Screens emit a blue light that disrupts our melatonin levels, which confuses our body into not knowing whether it is time to sleep yet. If you struggle to be away from your phone, you get the double whammy of melatonin disruption and a stimulated mind, making it extra hard to catch good quality zzz’s. It can seem tough at first, but it really will make a big difference if you ditch the screens for an hour (at least) before bedtime.
Reading can be another great way to signal to your body it is time to go to sleep (but watch out for those page turners that have you pouring over the story into the early hours!).
Ditch the booze… sometimes
You may feel a glass of wine (or two) helps you doze off, but drinking actually reduces the quality of your sleep – you don’t REM sleep when you have had alcohol. This means your body and mind don’t get the level of renewal and restoration they need.
A chronic lack of sleep is thought to contribute to long-term health problems such as diabetes, obesity, dementia, and other cognitive disorders. It really is an essential part of our health and wellbeing.
Commit to alcohol-free nights, and try integrating them consecutively to get a few full nights in without any alcohol in your system. Aim for more nights off than on the booze – you’ll soon feel the difference!
You deserve it!
You really do. Think of it as the best investment you can make in yourself and your biggest treat. Make every night a spa break, and going to bed an event you look forward to. Embrace the wonderous experience and notice the benefits it brings.
Let me know how you get on!
Sleep will nourish your physical energy, and support you mental, emotional and spirit energies too. Find out which of the 4 energies tends to be your strongest, and which has the most potential with the SuperPower Energy Quiz.
Originally published at mypowerbar.co.uk