Sleep

Sleep.  It’s something that we talk about all the time.  Mostly about how much sleep we DIDN’T get. We know we need it.  We know we’d feel better and be healthier if we had regular sleep.  So, why don’t we get the recommended 7-9 hours of sleep on a regular basis?

That’s another question that I think we know the answer to- we’re too damn “busy” for sleep.  If we’re being honest with ourselves the reality is that we’re too distracted to sleep.

 

It is very easy to get sucked into doing things that we deem more important than sleep.  Especially as parents. But I know that I feel my best when I’m in bed by 10 pm and asleep by 10:30 pm.  And I’m a bear on the days that I don’t! Or worse. It’s not pretty. I have shifted my way of thinking and am making sleep a priority, just like eating well and exercising.  I’ve found that most things that distracted me and caused me to stay up to ungodly hours are never going to be DONE- laundry, dishes, paying bills, etc. After getting 8 hours of consistent sleep, I can see that it’s not worth it to stay up to do those never-ending chores.  My health is more important, as well as my sanity.

The good news is that we can reconnect with the natural rhythms that encourage healthy sleep patterns.  Here are a few tips to help you get a restful night’s sleep:

  • Keep a consistent sleep schedule. Get up at the same time every day, even on weekends.

  • Set a bedtime that is early enough for you to get at least 7 hours of sleep.

  • Make sure your bed and bedding are comfortable.  The average life of a mattress is 10 years.

  • Don’t go to bed unless you are sleepy.

  • If you don’t fall asleep after 20 minutes, get out of bed.

  • Establish a relaxing bedtime routine.

  • Use your bed only for sleep and sex.

  • Make your bedroom quiet and relaxing. Keep the room at a comfortable,

      cool temperature.

  • Limit exposure to bright light in the evenings.

  • Turn off electronic devices at least 30 minutes before bedtime.

  • Don’t eat a large meal before bedtime. If you are hungry at night, eat a

      light, healthy snack.

  • Exercise regularly and maintain a healthy diet.

  • Avoid consuming caffeine in the late afternoon or evening.

  • Avoid consuming alcohol before bedtime.

  • Reduce your fluid intake before bedtime.

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Sleep Resources

To learn about the other of The 4 Seeds of Self-Care and how they are connected, click on each of the images below.

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