Sleep Rituals to Wind Down Your Body & Mind
There are times when I dread the bedtime regime...you know those nights where you feel too tired and wired to brush your teeth and wash your face so you do so as quickly as possible only to crawl into bed with incomplete thoughts swimming around your mind, then you fall asleep still thinking away and wake up unsure of if you actually slept? If I get to this place I know its time to redesign my sleep rituals in order to lean on them for support so that I actually look forward to my nighttime wind down. A time to turn in and shut off the outside world (yes that means your phone), quiet the mind, let your body relax and soften, and sink into your pillow for a dreamy sleep that recharges your mind, body, and spirit...
So here are a few of my favorite sleep rituals that when put into nightly practice can feel life altering...
1) Look at your schedule and map out the next day. This is a good time to write down any of those last minute things you need to do (as opposed to your mind trying to remember them as you're laying in bed later).
2) Put your phone on 'do not disturb' mode or better yet airplane mode 3 hours before bed. Studies show the blue light from your phone keeps your brain stimulated and can slow down or even stop the production of melatonin from being released in your brain. Even if you put your phone settings to yellow light at night time that doesn't count! Beyond the aspect of mental stimulation, this is a time for you to disconnect from the outside word and focus inward and reflect or just chill. Take this one step further and sleep with your phone outside of your bedroom. I have such a better sleep when it's out of sight and this breaks the habit of checking your phone if you wake up in the middle of the night or first thing in the morning. If you are worried about not hearing your alarm clock get an old school one for your nightstand.
3) Relax your body with an epsom salt bath.
Light a candle, dim the lights, and have a bath or shower with Lavender essential oils (I love Vitruvi oils and sleep mist) and cleanse your body and mind.
Writing out what happened in your day is not only a great way to document and reflect, but it can also feel like an emotional download that helps to strengthen the relationship you have with yourself.
5) Make yourself a Sweet Dreams Tonic
Boil hot water and add:
- Organic Ginger Tea (caffeine free)
- Aswaghanda - this adaptogen helps reduce the effects of mental, emotional, and physical stress.
- Triphala by Sunpotion - a blend of the Amalaki, Bibhitaki, and Haritaki fruit and is a rejuvenating and balancing herbal formula. Triphala strengthens, Cleanses, and Tonifies the Digestive System without stripping essential nutrients from the body.
- half a teaspoon of organic local honey
6) Set up your room to promote sleep
Studies show that sleeping in a dark quiet room with less light allows you to get into a deeper state of sleep. Air quality is also something to consider. We have a molekule air purifier in our bedroom which has helped significantly with allergies and waking up feeling fresh and clear.
7) Listen rather than watch.
Instead of falling asleep watching a show (totally guilty of this) try to avoid screen time and read or listen to a podcast, audio book, or a guided sleep meditation.
Some of these rituals take a little discipline but once you get into the rhythm you will begin to appreciate this time as a sacred calming part of your day filled with little acts of self care that can help you to feel more present, connected to yourself, and have a deeper more restful sleep.