Forget sleeping like a baby, I aspire to sleep like a cat. They can sleep anywhere, any time, on anything. The washing machine, the printer, a hair brush, a basket of clean washing – all appear to be equally comfortable. Sadly, we’re not all so gifted.
On the bed, on top of Dad's legs, seems like a good spot today
I’ve always been a light sleeper, and in the last few years that got worse. After a lot of study and trying things out my sleep has improved again, thank goodness! I now know LOTS of tricks to help my clients with their sleeping, and that I can share with you, dear Steemit friends.
I originally planned an in depth series, covering all aspects of sleep. But that was going to take me ages, and it’s not the Steemit way! Much better that I just share a few tips at random every day or so, and get the info out there.
I could start by talking about why we need sleep, but if you’ve clicked through to this article, you already know why YOU need more sleep. So let’s just dive in.
Today I’ve chosen three tips that don’t require anything special in the way of equipment, or any new skills to learn, so you can start straight away.
Tip # 1
Always have an open window in the bedroom.
If you’re in the northern hemisphere, you’re just coming out of summer and into autumn (fall), so you’ll already be doing this. But down here in the southern hemisphere, we’re just coming out of winter and mostly won’t have been.
In “The Science of Being Well”, published in 1910, Wallace Wattles says:
The brain and nerve centers cannot be thoroughly vitalized if you sleep in “dead” or stagnant air. You must have the living atmosphere vital with nature’s Principle of Life. I repeat, do not make any compromise in this matter. Ventilate your sleeping room completely, and see that there is a circulation of outdoor air through it while you sleep. You are not sleeping in a perfectly healthy way if you shut the doors and windows of your sleeping room, whether in winter or summer.
He goes on to say that this is so important, that if you can’t arrange it – move!
It doesn’t have to be as wide open as in the picture. But even on the coldest nights, aim to have it open at least a crack.
Tip # 2
This is for those of you who have a racing mind at night. One of the reasons our mind keeps repeating the same thing over and over all night is because we’re afraid we’ll forget it. So we need to get it down on paper, then our mind can relax.
It’s dead simple, but you just have to remember to set it up before you get into bed: Keep a large pad and a pen by the bed.
If your mind is already racing when you get into bed, write everything down before you turn the light out. Rip the page off, so you have a blank page if you need it later.
If you wake later with thoughts, don’t turn the light on, just grab your pad and pen and start scribbling in the dark. That’s why you need a blank page on a large pad, so you can scribble without needing to see.
The reason for this is that if you turn on the light, your pineal gland will think it’s morning which can create a whole new sleeping problem.
It the things going round in your mind are just your mind coming up with a whole load of BS, it doesn’t matter. Just get it down on paper and out of your mind, then bin the paper later without looking at it.
Lots more ideas to come for racing mind, but this one is especially useful if the same thoughts just keep going round and round.
Tip # 3
You probably won’t like this one – no watching TV in bed!
For good sleep, we need the bedroom (or at least the bed) to be associated only with sleep. Sex is the only other thing that should be happening there.
Watching TV in bed sets up an association in your mind between bed and TV. If you have trouble sleeping, you don’t want to entrain your mind to think it’s TV time when you get into bed. You want to start entraining your mind to prepare for sleep.
It may take a while to retrain your brain on this one. So if the one way you can relax before sleep is by watching TV, for now just do it elsewhere, and once you feel sleepy, head for bed.
Eventually you want to find new ways to unwind, as there are other problems with TV and other screens before bed, which we’ll cover another time.
Many more tips to come…