A good night’s sleep
How to get a good night’s sleep
You likely have asked that question at some point in your life?
America has a sleeping problem, with 40 million Americans suffering chronic, long-term sleep disorders and an additional 20 million experiencing occasional sleeping problems  it clearly is an issue. Sleep deprivation is very stressful and can also make life feel overwhelming.
“Study the patient rather than the disease… Observe… if he sleeps or is suffering from lack of sleep” Hippocrates
Sleep is sacred, as it is when the body rests, detoxifies and renews itself.
Unsurprisingly, if you are not sleeping then these fundamental bodily functions are not happening as effectively.
The world is hectic enough, so sleep is a time to be protected. Do what you can to make sure you sleep well. We need rest!
Restore your body
Sleep can restore the mind, revive the body and help gain perspective on life. I don’t think sleep is an negotiable part of life although clearly many feel it is, sacrificing an extra hours sleep for a quick check of their social media updates. Hey! That computer and phone both have off buttons, as far as I know!
It is time to alter our habits?
Sleep is essential if one wishes to be feel balanced and not stressed. Maybe the vast lack of sleep, in society, is a factor in why so many are angry, irrational, frustrated or sad and suffer from rage whilst simply waiting in line at the Post Office. Trust me, in the run up to Christmas I’ve seen it a LOT! Folks huffing and puffing, swearing and carrying on but none of that has (so far) made the queue (line) move any faster!
Guard your mind
The mind is susceptible to what it sees, thus watching many TV shows is unwise before bed. Worries are part of life but they do not need to be.
Joyce Meyer in her superb book “Eat the Cookie and Buy the Shoes” has many wonderful strategies for seeking balance in your life. If you have not read it, then see if your local library has a copy or you can look at it online- this is my affiliate link.
When worries consume you action is required. Journalling, praying, meditation, mindfulness and even ‘accepting what is’ can assist the give the mind peace.
Unwinding before bed
Unwinding before bed is vital if you want your body to feel relaxed and ready to sleep. I do not know why we resist rest so much? It doesn’t make us less productive, in fact some believe wakeful rest improves productivity. Sleep certainly improves creativity.
Why not do some ironing or read a book rather than sitting in front of the computer or television before bed. Using a computer or mobile telephone can actually overstimulate the body and disrupt sound sleep, so research found in 2008. 
Palming the eyes before bed can help the eyes relax and ease facial tension.
Rest your mind
Silence is healing, many go to retreats to rest and recuperate by not talking for days, so why not have some quiet time before bed? You can also have ‘wakeful rest‘ or silence in your day, it is easier than it sounds..
Do your best to create a positive atmosphere why not recall things you are grateful for from the day; it can relax the body and calm the mind. Gratitude is a positive tool to master and is thought to assist with sleep. 
Ahh, rest in a warm bath
Perhaps add some epsom salts or a drop of lavender oil.
Enjoy the bath, relax, just notice your body unwinding, slowing down after a busy day.
Rest is a time to be valued, don’t feel guilt- you need it!
Tips for a great night's sleepSome ideas to make your home conducive for sleep:
Turn cell phones off at night
Make sure your room is tranquil and uncluttered
Avoid having a television in the bedroom
Don’t drink oodles of water before bed, as that can disrupt your sleep when you need to pee!
Sleep in a totally darkened room, which is cool in temperature
Open a window to get fresh air, if you feel cold in bed enjoy a hot water bottle or extra blanket on top.
If you get cold feet – wear bed socks.
Using lavender oil is thought to help relax the mind, ease insomnia and anxiety, just a drop on the pillow can suffice.
Fermented foods and sleep?
Beneficial bacteria which contain lactobacillus helveticus, have been reported that they may have a more favourable effect on sleep than a placebo. 
I eat many fermented foods and sleep soundly. Actually getting a healthy dose of fermented foods in the diet is traditionally wise for overall wellbeing not just sleep.
You don’t have to buy probiotics, why not learn how to make sauerkraut? It is easier than you think!
Dim the lights
The advent of the electric light is also a factor in lack of sleep. It is now possible to work until late or sit watching television but there is an off switch… for the sake of your sleep- use it!
What tips can you share that aid a restful night’s sleep? Comment below…
 Brain Basics- understanding sleep
 Mobile phones and Sleep. The Independent.co.uk
 Gratitude influences sleep through the mechanism of pre-sleep cognitions. University of Manchester, England.
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