Browsing articles tagged with "sleep | Coaching Northwest"

Achieving good sleeps!

Jun 2, 2020   //   by Anne Russell   //   Blog, Life Coaching  //  No Comments

Currently we are all keen for a good night’s sleep to enable the strongest of us to keep well. For those with underlying health conditions, or general aging issues, or sheer tiredness and weariness that comes with the tension, anxiety and maybe depression of long standing challenges, sleep is utterly impressively important.

Sleep as previously mentioned is also a vital component of the efficiency of the immune system – which keeps us fighting off bacteria and viral overwhelm. So let’s look immediately at sleep support systems when the thinking is a constant or sudden “I can’t sleep!” We feel quite outraged or insulated or worried that what we understand as essential is not happening. And being awake for hours in the dark is unsettling.

Professor Lord of Birmingham Uni directed at study on the immune system that included the benefit of sleep, amongst many studies around the world dedicated to this issue. She maintains that if you “disrupt your sleep, your immune system will suffer.”

The first thing is to go to bed at the same time, rise at the same time approx, select the bright light of daylight this time of year as soon as you are up and low lighting at end of day. Very importantly, leave electrical goodies out of the bedroom! That includes, TV, computer, ipad, mobile phone, chargers. They are not part of the bedroom scene, they will disrupt your own electric magnetic field, they will keep you too alert to sleep well.

The room needs to be totally dark, eye masks may be a must in the lighter months from dawn onwards. Heavy meals pre bedtime are not a good idea. Digestion of food is a massive job for the body, and it really doesn’t want to be focused on that soon before your bedtime, your feeling tired time. It’s a message to rest, digesting food won’t help. Plenty complex carbohydrates at this time – around 2 -3 hours before you would consider closing down from the day – is good. See my other blogs for a listing of supportive foods for sleep enhancement.

Exercise is obviously good, but not, like food, near bedtime. Stretches, and gentle yoga – ok, running, walking, cycling etc shift the innate fight and flight responses – but wind down gradually, and don’t drink alcohol to bring about sleep! It may unwind muscle, but it will bring you alert too soon by messing up your deep sleep patterns. It’s interesting how many people have a cup of tea full of caffeine, late in the day. If sleep is not easy, I really wouldn’t have caffeine after lunch time.

Clearing the mind, easing the thought waves with calming music, sound designed to relax the brain waves – there is deliberately techno music to create the calming brain waves instead of those that stimulate – some sound like rain water for example. These take a gentle 30 mins or so to be effective. Breathing from the diaphragm deliberately filling up completely with oxygenated air, and removing the carbon dioxide with the out breath, just as long and deliberately is guaranteed to settle down the system. Maybe meditation before bedtime, which is just a way of recognising that stillness is now wanted. Discover the amazing parasympathetic system instead of just knowing of your sympathetic system – this is calm and steadiness v alert and liveliness!

And Be Present! Be in the Now ! Leave the uncontrollable factors to go to sleep too! Come out of the habit of allowing your mind to wander away into the future or worry about what has happened. You need to be aware and choose your thoughts. Dismiss unhelpful patterns. Your body/mind wants to rest. Give it that chance, rather than sabotage it with endless thinking.

Read, distract with something pleasant. Be kind to others, and remember others will be kind in return too, and allow good things to come to you as well as the tough times. Bring on the good emotions, bring on the sleep, give your mind a happy thought to bring into the light of day ” I am fine” for instance. You will sleep and wake up so. ” I am weary and frightened” and you will wake up so.

Bring on the sleep, bring on the healing.

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