Many people across the globe struggle to get enough sleep.
It’s likely because our activities and our internal clock are at odds with one another.
We stay up later, expose ourselves to interior lighting into dark hours, are active until right before bed, and have hectic lives that we struggle to forget about when we lay our heads down. The stress of these actions produces chemicals that contradict physiological responses of a natural circadian rhythm.
And because of all of this, we’re not sleeping well.
If you are having trouble sleeping and want to get serious about a good night’s rest, try some of our recommendations below to create a serene sleep-enhancing wind down routine that works for you.
2 Hours Before Bed: Slow Down Neurological Activity
Power Off Electronics and Bright Lights: Did you know that there are wavelengths of light that are stimulating? Blue light, found in LED electronics such as your phone, computer, and television, emit the same wavelengths as sunlight, tricking your internal clock into believing that it’s daytime, even if its midnight.
Some people are very light-sensitive. And electric lights are so prevalent into the evening, they might be the cause for your sleep trouble. Blue light exposure, from electronics or even high CCT LED lights, has been found to inhibit production of melatonin- a sleep hormone naturally released by your body when the light shifts towards evening wavelengths.
So, to make sure your body’s circadian rhythms are aligned with your schedule, two hours before your intended bedtime, turn electronics off, dim your lights, or exclusively use sleep lights that state specifically that blue wavelengths are diminished or removed.
90 Minutes Before Bed: Slow Down Physical Activity
As you get closer to bed, physical activity should slow down to allow your heart rate to slow and endorphin levels to stabilize.
Take a bath: A warm bath can’t be beat when it comes to initiating relaxation. Some soft music, a few candles, and a cup of sea salt infused with Dream Essential Oil Blend can ease you into a tranquility that supports a good night’s rest.
This oil is a tantalizing combination of jatamansi, patchouli, mandarin, ylang ylang, and night blooming jasmine. It settles the mind and will guide you gently and serenely into colorful, intuitive dreams when the time comes to lay your head down.
Self-care: Enjoy further self-pampering with Azul Body Serum. It’s a wonderful evening companion and ideal for application on damp skin after a serene bath. Made from 100% organic and wildcrafted essential oils like jojoba, blue tansy, cacao, neroli, frankincense, and vanilla, its intoxicating scent will lull you even further into relaxation. Its fast absorbing and nourishing for your beloved skin, and the moment of self-care can help you unwind, let your mind wander, and your muscles relax.
Getting a good night’s rest is all about aligning our body, spirit, and mind to become attuned to the natural rhythms again. Be sure to exit the warm bath with an hour or so before bedtime to allow your body’s temperature to cool, which will support its natural biological process.
1 hour Before Bed: Slow Down Mental Activity
When we are alert and stressed at bedtime, we produce hormones and chemicals that are counteractive to sleep preparation. Therefore, its important to begin to wind down our mental activity to reduce anxiety and its physiological consequences.
Meditate: Meditation is a great stress reliever, with many benefits. It slows your heart rate and calms the mind, bringing focus inward and relieving stress through focusing on the present. To experience all these benefits, it is recommended that you begin your practice at least an hour before bed.
Find a peaceful space, get comfortable, and focus on your breathing. Begin with a few deep breaths, then let your breath flow naturally. Allow thoughts to come and go, acknowledge them, and move on by bringing your awareness to the present moment.
Diffuse vata essential oil: Aromatherapy can be a powerful tool for sleep and health. Diffusing vata essential oil can help bring about peace and calm, shutting down an overactive mind. This can be done alongside meditation or anytime as you are winding down from the day.
Enjoy a cup of chamomile tea: Chamomile is a traditional medicinal herb associated with feelings of serenity and reduced anxiety. If you find you are struggling to shut down your mind when you lie down for bed, chamomile tea may help. It has mild sedative properties and can produce a natural chemical that relaxes your nerves.
30 minutes Before Bed: Slow Down Emotional Activity
Perhaps we love sleep so much not just for avoiding the consequences of too little of it; but maybe because in our moments right before and after sleep, we are detached from emotional burdens and worries. This is a key element of a deep sleep, and there are ways to calm and control your emotions to achieve more restful nights and peace throughout your waking moments, too.
Reading or journaling: You may elect to read a book or write in your diary before bed. This can help take your mind off the day’s activities or leave your thoughts on a page to help clear your mind for a restful night.
Tomorrow’s to-do list keeping you up? Keep a notebook by the bed. Get it out of your head and onto paper. This simple act can reassure you that you won’t forget your tasks, so your mind will loosen its grip on that stressful concern.
Diffusing emotionally-supportive essential oils: As you’re preparing for bedtime, aromatherapy can be a serene and relaxing addition. There are natural botanicals known for their sleep enhancing properties; some even delight your subconscious with creative and intuitive dreams!
Jatamansi is a spectacular oil revered for its sleep-promoting properties. Dab it on the crown of your head and the soles of your feet to encourage deep sleep.
Vata Roll-On is a variant of the vata essential oil recommended for diffusing, but is blended with jojoba for direct application to sensitive skin. Dab this moisturizing delight on the crown of your head or use with an additional carrier oil for a relaxing foot massage.
Dream Essential Oil Roll-On can be applied on the palms at bedtime and inhaled deeply. For stronger application, add more oil to the palms, and gently massage your neck, shoulders, hands, or feet. This mysteriously nocturnal blend boasts the same combination of delightful botanicals recommended for your bath, with the addition of moisturizing jojoba, and promises a strong spiritual dream state.
There are plenty of techniques for falling asleep faster and staying asleep throughout the night.
A combination of these can help promote feelings of serenity and tranquility and align physiological responses to a natural circadian rhythm.
Try a few out and see what works for you!