..and so to sleep..

Are you having disrupted sleep? Waking in the morning feeling like someone has taken you on in a boxing ring? Are you struggling to even get off to sleep and quieten the mind in the first place? You are not alone, sleeping issues are becoming seen more frequently in my practise, and many people haven’t slept properly for years.

Sleep is such an important side to having good health and it is under estimated in regards to this. I see children that are kept awake at night with their tablets and phones and their parents telling me that they are disruptive in school, can’t concentrate, they have no focus, and are bad tempered in the evenings. They struggle with staying awake in their lessons in the afternoons, and show obvious blood sugar issues with mood swings. But it’s not just happening to children, the epidemic of sleeplessness continues into adulthood, and my practise is becoming full of people who tell me they routinely don’t sleep well, and are feeling depressed and are starting to struggle with weight issues.

Firstly it’s about understanding that stress is made far worse if you are not getting enough sleep, your body needs to have it’s rest which means having some down time before you are actually getting into bed. More often than not I know that watching a film drama or horror is enticing before bed but the adrenaline it can cause will prevent you from sleeping well. Electronic devices in the bedroom are also a culprit in keeping you awake, it’s not just the light that they emit, but also the EMF’s are shown to impact on health, and for children the constant distraction factor. Not getting enough sleep can also be a factor in weight gain, because the more tired you feel in the day the more you are likely to eat to keep your blood sugar balanced, and this food is unlikely to be healthy!

Can’t get off to sleep? Is this because you are suffering from stress and can no longer quieten your mind? Well this is a bigger issue in regards to how you are managing what is going on in your life and starting to get a grip on it all, and it could well be worth working with a coach in regards to helping you sort out the priorities to work on so you aren’t so overwhelmed in dealing with it.

Or is this because you are drinking and eating foods that are driving an adrenaline response? Drinking coffee, tea, green tea, and having chocolate all can lead to you staying awake longer, don’t forget that coke’s also have high amounts of caffeine and I’m also seeing these caffeine fuelled drinks are leading to lack of sleep. The numbers of children that I’m seeing struggling with their focus and concentration who are also suffering from mood swings is increasing, and the thing they have in common has been the cola drinks. Worrying large amounts of coke is drunk each day, and this amount grows more and more over time to a point where it would be considered addictive not just for the sugar but also considering the caffeine levels. All of these drinks can be stopping you from sleeping and having a knock on effect the next day.

Learning to relax is also a factor for most people now with a culture that never stops and it’s almost a weakness to be sat doing nothing, and a badge of honour to be so busy you are burning out, never mind the candle at both ends! Taking time out to meditate was one of the best presents I ever gave to myself, I do it every day and helps me to reenergise and focus on what I want to do, and helps me to gain a perspective on the day again. It also gives me a clear message that my health and well being is important, which is easy to forget running a business as lots of you will know.

Taking time out before bed is important, this readies the body for sleeping, and starts to give it a clear message that it’s now time to sleep. Warm baths, Epsom Salt baths in particular are a lovely thing to do for relaxation, a light story, or some light music will all help to smoothly take you into slumber. The lights should be completely off when you sleep, and all light stopped from getting into the room to enable the body to rest completely.

Our bodies need a good period of time for sleeping, so by ensuring you are in bed by 10pm you can get your 8 hours, I know it sounds boring and I’m starting to sound like your mother, but believe me when you get your full quota of rest you will thank me for it. You will start to feel lighter, happier, and less stressed, and the lack of sleep can be a factor in creating more stress for you in the end. With a clearer head from enough sleep you will start to be able to focus and concentrate far better on your tasks in the day, particularly as your energy levels will be much better as well.

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