Those of us who have trouble falling asleep at night are no strangers to tossing and turning, counting sheep, staring at the ceiling and watching time crawl by. Getting the right amount of rest at night is necessary for us to function. We need to let our bodies re-set, and properly doing so helps us keep up our overall health – mental and physical. If you’re having a hard time falling asleep at night, there are a number of natural ways that you can help your body relax, and even speed up the process of falling asleep.
Don't Nap Even if restless sleep makes you want to nap during the day, don't. That nap may be just what's keeping you from catching nightly Zs. Instead, take a walk or get some fresh air to reenergize until it's bedtime.
Stay Active Exercise isn't the only way to expend energy; being active throughout the day, whether it's running errands or talking on the phone while you take a walk, helps ensure that you're sleepy when your head hits the pillow.
Establish an evening routine Adhering to relaxing habits and falling asleep around the same time each night will condition your body to maintain a steady internal rhythm and more readily welcome sleep each night.
Take a bath A warm bath or shower can help you relax and wind down after a chaotic day. I take one each night, and it’s my favourite part of the day. Try to do this right before bed! My brain begins its shutting-down process while I’m taking my bath, simply because it knows what comes next. Also, use a lavender essential oil—the scent is so soothing.
Drink Herbal Tea Settling down with a mug of non-caffeinated tea can help you relax before bedtime. Up the sleep-inducing power by opting for herbs that have their own relaxing properties, like chamomile, mint, and valerian. My go-to is David's Tea Mother's Little Helper -so good!
Turn it all off You already knew this one was coming, right? The noises and lights from your electronics will keep your brain alert when it should be winding down. Do not sleep next to your phone! (If you use it as an alarm clock, simply move it to the other side of your room.)
Breathing exercises Deep breathing does great things for your brain and body. Focus on each slow inhale and exhale. And try this “4-7-8″ breathing exercise! Change your pace If you haven’t fallen asleep within 30 minutes of getting into bed for the night, you should get up. Try reading a book or walking around the house. Do not turn the TV on—electronics should stay off.
We’d love to hear your own experiences and techniques! xo Kimberley