As a society that has become more and more focused on holistic health and wellness, we are inundated with articles listing the most nutritious foods to eat and the fast track to awesome abs or a bountiful booty.
Yes, it's true that the food that you eat can boost your energy, just as the energy with which you digest it is important. Yes, your heart health will dramatically improve by chasing after those abs, as a regular fitness routine will also affect your mood, energy and overall health, along with shrinking your waistline. I'm not saying those things aren't important, but I see a serious disregard for healthy sleep habits in the American culture.
I am guilty, my friends! As a creative multi-passionate soulpreneur, when inspiration hits, I'm running with it. Just this week, I decided I was going to pull an all-nighter so that I could really crank out a new website I was ready to launch. I felt the urge to push through the stagnant energy. I do this when I'm in crazy cleaning mode too. I pull all of the things out of the closet and just have this craving for clutter removal that removes all acknowledgement of food intake or sleep deprivation.
Are you a hyper-motivated person? Or do you get lost in the sauce when delving into a book, project or even just catching up on that favorite show? Imagine leaving your car running at all times. Drive around, run your errands, park in the garage and just leave it running. Like a car engine, your brain needs to process, decompress and just marinate in chill mode for a bit.
It's Time to Get More Sleep
In that profound state of rest, the body is able to deeply restore itself. Intuitively we know this to be true. This is why a doctor will tell us to get plenty of rest when we are sick. That is because the body, when unimpeded by the machinations of the mind, is in the best possible position to heal and restore itself.
Sleep is how our bodies restore themselves. Sleep is how our minds clear the slate. You have all of these thoughts, experiences and conversations throughout the day. On a strictly physiological note, your body needs to rest. Now here is the bonus! On a spiritual note, your soul needs to recharge. Your dreams are a way for you to sort all of the sparks that have been firing throughout the day in your human experience. It's another way for you to connect with the higher conscious and download the messages that clear the path as you journey through your purpose-filled life.
Sleep is the key to shift from being a human DOing to living life as a human BEing! As Arianna Huffington states in her book Thrive, "It's not 'What do I want to do?', it's 'What kind of life do I want to have?'"
Improve Sleep Quality
Getting quality sleep is the key. How do we do this?
- Clear your space: Recharge your mobile devices in a different room from where you sleep. Remove the clutter by keeping your sleep space clear of messes, including clothing items lying around, non-essential items and any décor or miscellaneous items that don't bring you feeling of peace and joy!
- Journal: Quiet your mind by clearing the mind chatter before laying your head on that pillow. Give yourself some time before bed to just slow down and get quiet.
- Get Quiet: After you've cleared your space and cleared your mind, find rituals or routines that help guide into sleep from a place of calm and openness. You can do this through guided imagery, meditation or breathing exercise.
- Yoga Nidra: Also known as 'yogic sleep,' Yoga Nidra has the same effect as restorative sleep, by quieting the mind and relaxing the body while conscious.
"In that profound state of rest, the body is able to deeply restore itself," stated Kamini Desai, Amrit Yoga Teacher Trainer. "This is why a doctor will tell us to get plenty of rest when we are sick. That is because the body, when unimpeded by the machinations of the mind, is in the best possible position to heal and restore itself."
Morning Mind: Give yourself time when you wake up to slowly reintegrate. Many people begin letting their mind race about their to-do list or the day ahead as soon as that alarm goes off. Lie in bed and stretch, maybe also listing off some things you're grateful for. Also try jotting down any notes about dreams you had right when you first awake. Then start the day clear and ready to enter from an open space of awesomeness!