I planned to take over the world...but I'm tired. Feel familiar? According to the CDC, more than 1/3 of Americans do not get enough sleep. Look to your left...look to your right...yup... One. In. Three. That's a whole lot of us humans walking around super tired, y'all. This week marks sleep awareness week, the perfect time to take a solid look at our sleep self care.
NAP TIME IS MY HAPPY HOUR.
The side effects from lack of sleep are astounding and probably even eye opening to things you might be dealing with, not even realizing they have a correlation to how many zzz's you get a night. Lack of sleep can lead to :
- weight gain/obesity
- poor concentration and productivity
- memory issues
- a greater risk of heart disease and stroke
- mood swings and changes
- high blood pressure
- low sex drive
- higher risk of stroke
- acne and earlier onset of permanent aging in your skin
- poor metabolism
- increased inflammation
- weakened immune system
The list goes on. Any light bulb moments there for you? Big time light bulb moments here. The GREAT news is that with a regular solid & healthy sleep schedule, you could see a noticeable change in your lifestyle, energy level and health. Sleep self-care. Sign us up.
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It's sleep awareness week, a beautiful time to take a serious look at your sleep rituals (or lack of). Here's 9 tips to help you get your best night's sleep.
1. CALM YOUR SLEEP SPACE
Does your sleep space lend itself to your best night's sleep? Calm your space to be clutter free, comfy, dark, quiet and with soothing colors.
2. CONSISTENCY IS KEY
Is your sleep schedule non-existent? Stats say that if you stick to the same (or very similar) sleep schedule daily, you'll get optimum sleep.
It's recommended for adults to get an average of 7-9 hours of sleep a night. Determine your bedtime by setting your alarm, then counting 9 hours backwards. Don't forget to add an extra hour for a relaxing bedtime ritual (see below).
3. GET YOUR TO DOs DOWN
Put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) and get your to dos out of your head. Developing a habit of writing your to dos for the next day a few hours before bedtime can help to clear your mind when it's time to put head to pillow.
4. POWER DOWN
TV, laptop, phone. Power it all down. If you can, hours before bedtime. Calming your mind is just as essential as calming your space when it comes to getting your best sleep possible. Take as much stimulus as you can away - social media, tv, work...put it all down.
If possible, sleep without your phone near you. It might be a difficult habit to break, but you'll feel it pay off quick (there's a whole other slew of benefits that can be found in beginning your day without a quick hop onto your social feed or glance at your inbox!).
SLEEP IS THE BEST MEDITATION.
- DalAi Lama
5. MUSIC OR SILENCE?
This one is personal preference, BUT the sleep foundation says that "listening to soothing, slow music has a direct effect on the parasympathetic nervous system, which helps your body relax and prepare for sleep. Older adults who listen to 45 minutes of relaxing music before bed fall asleep faster, sleep longer, wake up less during the night, and rate their nights as more restful than when they don't listen to music."
Listening to soothing music or sounds while sleeping may work for some and not others. Relaxing background sounds may also help if your sleep space is in a noisier environment. Huge fans of the wave sleep sound over here ;)
6. SET YOUR TEMP
Sleep.Org says that the optimal temperature to get your best nights rest is between 60 and 67 degrees. Consider playing with the timer on your thermostat to match your sleep schedule.
7. SLEEPY TIME DIFFUSER BLEND
When prepping your sleep space, kick your essential oil diffuser on a bit before bedtime and feel the calming effects. Get our free sleepy time blend HERE.
8. PLACE LEPIDOLITE BEDSIDE
It's crystal month here at The Kai Life, so we had to mention our favorite calming crystal! Lepidolite is said to calm overactive minds, ease stress and create a sense of grounding and security. It's known to help you access a peaceful, dreamy state while you're sleeping. Place your favorite lepidolite piece next to your bed.
9. RELAX WITH A BEDTIME RITUAL
Develop your own bedtime ritual that you can look forward to daily. Love to read inspirational words before bedtime (check out some of our favorites HERE!)? Does a warm bath or shower calm you? Add a meditation or yin yoga sequence (sign up for our newsletter HERE we'll be dropping a nighttime sleep-worthy yin sequence SOON!). Do some serious self-care soul searching to put together your very own bedtime ritual that helps you end your day with gratitude and get your best night's sleep.
Just remember, like any solid ritual, it's a process. Don't be hard on yourself if you aren't always consistent at first or if something gets in the way of your best sleep. Decide what's important to you within your sleep ritual and go back at it again.
Namaste & good night.
Jenny is a mama, DJ, yoga teacher and beach-obsessed boss babe at TheKaiLife.com. You can find her with a huge smile on her face adventuring with her husband, son Kai and fur babies Koa & Snorkel; spinning music and dancing with you late night; teaching and practicing on her yoga mat or under a palm tree.
Follow her on instagram @iseekthewaves @jadoreurlife .
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