You probably already know that sleep is vital to your health and well-being.  When I’m well-rested, I am happier, more creative and I think my music shines a bit more brightly. Your face will show it too!  Sleep is just as important as a balanced diet and regular exercise.

I know –  it can be really frustrating trying to get natural sleep, but using aides instead of medication can help you enjoy a brighter tomorrow in the morning.  I’d like to share 10 tips I use for falling asleep.  I’ve tried hard to set a routine and stick to it, so I can be at my best every day!

Sweet slumber... the natural way!

Sweet slumber… the natural way! (image from kaibara87 on Flickr)

Animals never seem to have issues falling asleep.  So, why not learn from them how to get natural restful sleep by modeling some of their behavior.

1.  Don’t eat a meal within 2 hours of your planned bedtime.

2.  Avoid caffeine and alcohol.  If you do imbibe, remember that moderation is key.  In the last 2-3 hours before bedtime, limit yourself to cool, clear water.  De-caffeinated tea or warm milk are also healthful alternatives.

3.  Your bed should only be used for sleep.  No eating, drinking, reading or watching television.

Nothing but zzzzzzs!  (image from wwarby on Flickr)

Nothing but zzzzzzs! (image from wwarby on Flickr)

Of course, animals don’t get stressed like people do.  And stress can interfere with natural sleep rhythms.  You can minimize the effects of a busy lifestyle and hit the pillow ready to snooze when you do the following:

4.  Enjoy some relaxation music within 1 hour of bedtime.

5.  Gently stretch and/or do some yoga poses.  Meditation works, too.  Close your eyes and simply breathe deeply.

6.  Turn off all electronics (computer, television, etc.) 30 minutes before you retire for the night.

7.  Make a list of things on your agenda for the next day, or write in a journal.  Putting your thoughts down on paper gives you permission to let them go overnight, while you get some restful sleep.

8.  Try to make your bed a complete place of refuge.  Although I love incense and candles, I don’t burn them in the bedroom because the aroma can be distracting.  Likewise for soothing music.  I may unwind with a soft melody, but when its bedtime, I find that a cool, dark, quiet room is a perfect retreat at the end of the day.

9.  While it may be tempting to grab a cat nap like the adorable baby in the video above, sleeping too late in the day could disrupt your natural sleep cycle.  A power snooze of less than 30 minutes may invigorate, but more than that, and the risks outweigh benefits.

Speaking of naps, I just love this video from the « Cute animals falling asleep » series. Have you ever felt this tired?

10.  If all else fails, consider getting a medical check-up.  Some hormonal conditions can be treated pretty easily so you don’t lose sleep.  Alternatively, you may want to make some changes in your daily routine to minimize stress.  Too many hours volunteering, or staying past closing time at the office can really take its toll.  Make a list of the responsibilities you’ve taken on, and see if you can schedule more time for relaxing pursuits like photography, painting or music.

“There is more to life than increasing its speed.” ~ Ghandi

This little pooch is dog-gone tired! (image from Rombia on Flickr)

This little pooch is dog-gone tired! (image from Rombia on Flickr)

Sweet dreams!  Sleep well!

If you liked this post, be sure to check out Fill Your Soul with Simple Pleasures and New Age: Living With Integrity, Improve your health with meditation, The sound of Silence, Ambient music therapy, Treat your body like a temple.


Other posts you may like: Uplifting quotes about music and life, Treat your body like a Temple, Enigma, Fantastic New age music Singers.

 

 

Click image to listen to Marcome's music

Click image to listen to Marcome’s music

Click image to listen to Zen Voices

Click image to listen to Zen Voices

Click image to listen to Seven Seas

Click image to listen to Seven Seas

Click image to listen to Ougainatso

Click image to listen to Ougainatso