Who are these nocturnal creatures and how do they function?
Parents. These guys know a thing or two about sleep deprivation, I have heard the stories. Recently one brilliant mother reflected on the baby years telling me that she had gone out all day endlessly pushing the pram to get her baby to sleep. Upon returning home she thought the house had been robbed. It transpired that in fact she had left the front door wide open and the house was just messy. These stories of sleepless nights and reducing levels of functioning sound relentless yet somehow parents are not just conquering it, they are also achieving great things. Nourishing children, working full time and managing life admin, needless to say the rest of us are in awe. Apparently there is hope that one day, ONE DAY, they will experience good quality sleep again.
Parent or not most of us have experienced broken sleep patterns due to worry, chronic stress, anxiety, worked night shifts either In employment or in parenthood. Catching those Z’s and having a good nights sleep is fundamental to good health and wellbeing. Chronic sleep deprivation creates physical, mental and emotional symptoms that can all amount to generalised ill health. Aside from the disabling symptoms sleep deprivation creates, it also promotes bad habits. Temptations to reach for sugary snacks, smoking and being less active become more self justified and acceptable, after all you have likely been awake for a gazillion hours by this point.
The positive spin on this sheep counting nightmare is that there is plenty you can try to promote a decent nights sleep.
- Develop and stick to a good routine. Go to bed and get up at the same time your body loves routine, even if your spirit animal does not.
- Create a peaceful cosy space to sleep ensuring a good temperature to suit you.
- No devices in the bedroom ensure phones/laptops/smart watch are outside the bedroom.
- Diffuse or roll relaxing aromatherapies like lavender & camomile, #nealsyard #yellowgorse and #doterra have great ready made blends.
- Drink herbal tea, we love #pukkaherbs ‘Night Time’ tea.
- Stick to the ‘no caffeine after lunch time’ rule.
- Keep the room dark, even the smallest light can trigger our brain to stay awake.
- Scribble any worries down, keeping a pen and paper handy allows you to acknowledge these thoughts allowing you to confront them in the morning.
- Be mindful with yoga & the Calm app
- Eat a banana (*banana cake) for pudding they contain L-tryptophan, potassium and magnesium that are natural muscle and mind relaxants.
- Use breathing techniques. Place one hand on your chest, the other on your tummy notice how they rise and fall. Make your exhale longer counting to 6 then inhale counting to 3, repeat as required.
- Book a Reflexology treatment to help you reset and restore.
- No day time naps after lunchtime If you are blessed with such an opportunity.
- Stay active with regular exercise during the day time.
- Get fresh air, sunlight releases hormones that promote good sleep.
Here’s hoping these sleep hacks work for you.
Sleep tight, Roo x