So, now the clocks have gone forward. Most people will know that when the clocks go forward we actually lose an hour of sleep time as I was saying in my previous blog. However, having spent all of last week advising people how not to get caught out by the summer solstice, beginning of British summer Time, I have tweeted, broadcasted on half a dozen radio stations, mentioned it here, there and everywhere!
But now last night as the moment of truth arrived in my own household was I ready? Authenticity, congruency, walking the talk, did I set my clocks, my watch etc an hour ahead a few hours before I went to bed? Yes I did it ….so I’m not a hypocrite! I even went to bed an hour earlier than usual (although my watch said that it was the usual time) and I have to say that I slept well and woke feeling reasonably refreshed.
One of the reasons why I practice as a sleep coach is that I have had personal experience of chronic insomnia and having overcome my own sleep difficulties naturally, helping others to learn to sleep well naturally is one of my life’s greatest passions. Addictions to Zopiclone, Ambien Valium etc etc… is just not the way!
I was looking at some sleep research put together by laterooms.com who I’ve been consulting for over the last few weeks and it amazes me that 45% of us regularly sleep less than six hours per night. Learning how to go to bed an hour earlier will improve sleep times and your health.
There is real research that shows that if we are able to sleep one hour more than usual, that the improvements in overall health and well-being and cognitive and motor functions is a no-brainer.
One of the reasons why many of us have poor sleep is that our partners snore. Why suffer? Find a good pair of earplugs! Do your research as not all earplugs are the same. There are a earplugs for men and earplugs for women, who tend to have narrower ear canals. There are even earplugs that knock out almost all noise and earplugs that filter out only part of the sound spectrum. There are earplugs attenuated for fulltime parents (so that you can still hear the sounds of small children and babies, but not so much the sounds of rumbling traffic).
Another problem is light. Too much light in the bedroom can interfere with the production of melatonin. This hormone is produced naturally in the Pineal gland which helps the body in many ways to sleep, restore balance and the healing process. Get a good set of blinds/ curtains or at least purchase a good quality sleep eye mask. Again not all eye masks are equal – it’s worth shopping around and doing your eye mask research.
Considering how many hours a night we spend, or need to spend sleeping ideally well, it amazes me how few people take the time to find the right bed, pillow, bed linen, sleep mask, earplugs etc etc…
As a self-confessed sleep nut, the research needed for a great night’s sleep is worth every wonderful Zzzz…
When I created ‘The ABC of better sleep‘ as a downloadable app I wanted to teach people to use my ABC sleep technique anywhere in the world. I also included a number of ambient recordings that are rather wonderful to drift off to sleep with but then I realised that as a sleep training programme there was still something missing. I wanted to create something that was so relaxing and delicious that will help you to drift off and fall asleep using my ABC technique that went deeper and deeper… and didn’t count you back up again to waking consciousness. Something really to fall asleep with, whether at night or just for an afternoon nap. So that is the difference between ‘The ABC of Better Sleep‘, and my second app called ‘The Insomnia Cure.’
But ultimately, I believe in teaching how to fall asleep naturally without potions, headphones, apps or anything else. To give up trying to sleep, which is always the first mistake. Great sleepers never try to sleep, they just fall asleep naturally!
Instead of trying to sleep learned to relax. To relax your body and then your mind. To become so relaxed that, even if you’re not asleep yet, you reach a point of being so relaxed you don’t even care. And when you’re that relaxed your body is getting what it needs while you relax, and drift in and out, until you drift off…
Learn to let go of letting go.
Wishing you a great night’s sleep every night.