The chaos of the day often has us counting down the minutes until bedtime. Yet when our head finally hits the pillow, many of us struggle to fall into a peaceful, natural sleep – tossing and turning even as we yawn in frustrated exhaustion.
Getting a good night’s sleep is imperative to our physical, mental and spiritual health. Why is it so hard?
Try following these simple sleepytime rituals to restore restful slumber. You may find that your answer for how to get a great night’s sleep is closer than you think!
Hide Those Electronics
Your number one sleep saboteur is your cell phone. Any electronic device, really. Time spent in front of a blue screen, especially right before bed, disrupts your circadian rhythm and natural sleep cycle.
A great rule of thumb is to unplug an hour before bedtime to get your mind and body started on the path towards restful sleep.
Create Space for Relaxation
I know what you’re thinking. Relaxation?
Don’t you know how busy I am?
Let’s start with the hour that you just discovered by choosing to deliberately move away from any electronic device right before bedtime.
Simple evening rituals are designed to be blissful, centering on warmth and inner nourishment. I promise, you’ll soon discover that technology-free hour will be your favorite part of the day. Let’s slow down, help our mind and body unwind from the stress of the day and set the stage for nourishing sleep.
Take a Warm Bath
Let’s enhance your quiet bathtime experience by adding a few layers of sensory nourishment that will take you even farther into mindful peace.
- Dim the lights. Consider lighting a few candles or salt lamps.
- Diffuse or add a few drops of high quality, therapeutic grade essential oils to 1-2 cups of Epsom salts to foster emotional purification, detoxification and relaxation. Salt water and essential oils are a potent natural combination that can help us to ease into a peaceful, relaxed state that allows us to let go and rest deeply.
- My Favorite Sleepytime Oils: Lavender, Ylang Ylang, Geranium, Calming Blend, Grounding Blending, Basil
Take a Mindfulness Break
Once you have created the perfect atmosphere for a peaceful quiet bath, slip in and take a mindfulness break. Get comfortable, feel the supportive lightness of the water surrounding your body and release any tension or relax any muscles that feel tight.
Feel the water gently flowing around you to support your weightless form.
Soften and float your arms to the surface and become aware of the rise and fall of your breath. Notice that every cycle of inhalation and exhalation has a beginning, middle and an end. Tune in and ride the rise when you inhale and follow the release of your tension when you exhale. Soak. Repeat. Soften. Soak. Repeat. Let your tension dissolve as you prepare for sound sleep.
Try Some Basic Yoga
Let’s embrace restorative yoga as we prepare to lay down to sleep. This position is also scientifically referred to as “propping your legs up and getting your relax on.”
- Take a seat on the floor of your bedroom or on your bed.
- From this seated position, scoot one hip close to the wall and lie back as you gently swing your legs up the wall.
- Relax your shoulders and rest your arms at your sides.
- Feel your breath with one hand on your upper abdomen.
- Remain in this position for a few minutes. When you’re ready to release the position, slide your legs down on side and roll into a fetal position.
Use Essential Oils
Essential oils can infuse a room with a peaceful, calming atmosphere that helps you relax and fall into a more restful sleep. I already mentioned a few of my sleepytime favorites above…here are a few more! Vetiver, frankincense and cedarwood.
Dilute the oils with a carrier oil (like almond or coconut) and rub a few drops on the back of your neck or on the bottoms of your feet right before you hop into bed.
Essential oil diffusers are your secret weapon in the fight against disruptive sleep. Add a few drops of calming oils into the water in your diffuser, set it near your bed and you’ll soon find yourself peacefully drifting away to dreamland.
Share the Love
Do you have any favorite sleepytime rituals that have helped you discover more restful sleep? Please share in the comments below! How to get a great night’s sleep can look a little differently for everyone, so any creative idea is always welcome. Please share!