For many people, sleep is a problem. Getting to sleep, staying asleep, and feeling rested when you are done can be elusive goals. Here are a few tips, tricks and insights that may help you get your the rest you crave.
Getting to sleep:
Few people understand that it actually takes energy to shift your consciousness into sleep. Many people that suffer from insomnia are so depleted that they fail to muster enough energy to jump into slumper. If you are one of these people, try taking some rejuvenative herbs or get a weekly massage for a month. Practicing yoga or meditation for 20 minutes before sleep will allow you to conserve and build energy, too.
Most of us have had the experience where we are very tired but then around 10-11pm we get a surge of energy and alertness that carries us into the wee hours of the morning. This second wind is caused by a rise in the fiery and stimulating force called pitta energy. Every night from 10pm-2am this subtle force rises up and affects us all. If you want to get to sleep on time, make a point of getting to bed at 9:30pm, before the stimulating energies of pitta give you a second wind and you lose three hours of sleep.
Have you ever heard that spicy foods give nightmares? They may indeed, but more importantly, spicy foods have a deep stimulating effect on our nervous system and consciousness. This agitation can affect our dreams, give us indigestion, and interrupt our sleep cycles. Try to keep the spicy foods out of your diet from 6pm onwards. Some people are very agitated by spice and may need to cut it out earlier than others.
They call the time between 12-2pm ‘liver time.’ What that means is that our liver and detoxification organs activate during the night to digest toxins and perform house keeping duties. Many of us fail to realize that eating food late forces our liver to digest that food instead of detoxifying us. It takes about four hours for our stomach to empty completely after a meal, which is why the rule says no food after 8pm. Adopting this strategy will go a long way to giving our bodies the undisturbed rejuvenation of nightly liver time.
Creating regularity in your wake up time is a powerful way to sync all of your biological systems. Have you every tried to plan a party and not give exact times for your attendees? By waking up at different times of the day and by not setting a consistent alarm every morning, we end up with chaos, just like if we forgot to set a time for our party. The best advice for getting your hormone levels and other wake up systems all together at the same time and place is to wake up at the same time every single day: weekends, weekdays, and holidays, too. Trust me, its worth it to pop up out of bed alert, refreshed, and with all hands on deck ready to take on your day.