The coziest time of year is here, winter. A chance to snuggle up next to the fire with a warm blanket and shamelessly change into your pj's before 6pm. Feeling tired and ready for bed, you anticipate a full night's rest. But for many of us, that may not always happen.
Maybe it's a struggle to fall asleep. Maybe you fall asleep and then wake up between 2-4am. The wheels in your head are turning and the thoughts are spinning. Feelings of frustration and exhaustion creep in as you stare at the dark ceiling knowing the next day is going to be a drag.
I want to lovingly remind you that you will experience a full night's rest soon. It isn't always about the next amazing practice or remedy you could be trying in your search to sleep well. The holistic wellness approach is a web. Your sleep cycle shifts with the seasons, stress, environment, and choices you make before bed.
The more you comfort and care for your internal self, the more it will show up on the surface.
The remedies I share below are a way to encourage your body and mind to lean into the sleepiness you feel toward the end of the day. That way, you capture the sensation and sync up with your bodies internal clock so you stay asleep the whole night.
Here are 5 natural remedies to end those sleepless nights.
This is by far one of the most influential habits you can do during the day that will effect your nighttime zzzz's. Exercise! Get in at least 20 minutes everyday to move the body during daylight hours. Move it, shake it. Anything! The connection between movement and sleep are explained further in this study, if you need a bit more convincing ;)
What's on your mind?
I could easily say "journal about your feelings" but ask yourself this question. "What's on my mind?" Or "What's bothering me?" If you can't fall asleep, the body might still be "on" or working to move a thought or emotion through. It's helpful to direct your attention towards the feeling and allow it space to cycle through.
Untangle your stress with these practices. Write down what you're thinking and just let the pen flow. Bend over and breathe to exhale out stale energy. Sing a song that relates to the feeling. Text a friend. Draw an image that also relates to the feeling, or words, and then draw a box around it to keep it on the page and out of your head.
Create a sacred sleeping space
Your room and bed are where you spend one-third of your life. One-third! This is your palace, sanctuary, and cave to create an inviting and warm space to nestle in for the night. Give yourself permission to upgrade your mattress, pillow, and sheets. Have a nightstand or shelf with items that bring you comfort and calming energy. Consider a small plant or two, crystals, a novel, a soothing foot oil, and a minimal light. Keep your room tidy. Put your electronics away and keep your phone on a distant dresser.
Ditch the late night snack
With less daylight hours, you might be eating dinner earlier, which is great! But it also opens up a window of time before bed where you may want a snack. Instead, reach for a warm drink with little to no caffeine, like herbal teas or golden milk. Your digestion starts to really slow down after 6pm and when you eat more food it's forced into overdrive to breakdown the food. When you sync your routine to your bodies internal clock and functions, you will experience better sleep.
The magic time: 10pm
Being ready for bed and actively falling asleep before 10pm will make a world of a difference. Not only will it be easier to fall asleep but you are more likely to stay asleep with this remedy. Do you ever notice you're tired between 8-10pm and then you feel an upward motion and catch a second wind? Universal energy goes down before 10pm and up after 10pm. Moral of the story, aim to be in bed by 9:45pm, 5 days of the week to align your body with the natural world.
Bliss. Sweet Dreams.