The lure of sleeping like a baby is enough to send anyone in wishful fantasies. Who wouldn’t want 8 (or 10) hours of deep, healing restorative zzzzz’s and beautiful dreams? Even better the promise of waking up feeling alert and fresh.
A (day) dream or a genuine possibility?
How to sleep like baby?
Let the experiment commence….
To be honest, I don’t sleep too badly really but I’d still love to know how to sleep like a baby does. They always look so completely immersed in the task don’t they. No resistance at all. Just happy dreams.
I have friends who are living nowhere near the land of slumber until the early hours. Fitful and restless their nights are no fun at all. Even worse their days are majorly impacted. You’ve only got to see the thrilled and illuminating grin of a mother who has been given the reprieve of a child free wakeup call to know the beauty of sleep. The mother glows on the bliss of that 8 hour window. Her day completely altered in every way.
Yep sleep is pretty important.
Even more so perhaps if you are suffering any kind of ill-health. During the night we detox and we repair. We heal through the power of sleep and our hormones re-set and adjust. Our mental and physical health affected so greatly by something so simple. So primal.
We just need it.
Many suggest the quantity of sleep is what is fundamental, but equally I believe that the quality is what really counts. If you get good deep sleep you can probably get away with sleeping less. A bit like HOW MEDITATION WORKS – which can give you the equivalent of up to 4 hours sleep with each 20 minute meditation session by the way.
Melatonin is our all important super sleep hormone. It needs to rise as we near bedtime to induce us into a snoozy state and keep us that way throughout the night. If our hormones are all balanced perfectly this will happen natural. But to be honest, perfect hormones are a rare find. Modern life does not co-operate at all and we suffer.
But there are a few hacks we can do to help……
// Firstly, switch off your phone and computer a few hours before bedtime. This not only helps the wind down effect (have a bath, snuggle in your cozy pjs’s and sip a soothing warm drink) but it helps melatonin production. Or rather, the screen light hinders melatonin and prevents you from being able to drift off easily. Even a minute of 2 of white screen light is said to cull melatonin production for up to 4 hours. If you have to use a phone prior to be then invest in a blue filter screen which will help dramatically. But if you can, turn it all off. (*Update – I now wear blue blocking glasses prior to bed and I get outside and get light directly into my eyes as much as possible during the day to help set the circadian rhythm.)
// Next, make sure your room is pitch black during the night. Again, even a smidgen of light (from lamp-posts outside or LED clocks in your room) will lesson melatonin and prevent you from entering a really deep sleep state.
Now, I admit I’ve always actually preferred a room which is light. I get a bit freaked out when I cannot see my hand in front of me. I like the light and knowing there are no monsters lurking in dark corners. Hehe. However, for the sake of better sleep I’ve invested in my first black out blind. I’m trying it tonight. I’ll let you know how it goes…. (*Update – I am experimenting with an eye mask as my blinds are not as good as I hoped. As yet I still find the mask unsettling.)
// Finally once our restful slumber is sorted we ideally want to wake up bright eyed and refreshed rather than sluggish and dreary. The 3rd hack is a wakeup sunlight lamp. These lovely little treats allow you to set a morning wake up time (with sound or without) and gentle (sun) light starts building 30 minutes prior, so by the time you want to rise your room is bathed in a full bright glow. I USE THIS ONE HERE.
Aside from it just feeing much nicer waking to light (as opposed to the pitch black) STUDIES SHOW THAT MORNING CORTISOL LEVELS ACTUALLY RISE WHEN THE LAMP IS USED This is significant for anyone with adrenal fatigue and low cortisol levels.
Cortisol is the hormone which gets us going. The lower it is upon waking the harder it will be to get yourself out of bed. Many people just cannot get up in the morning and I myself have very low levels. Ive used the lamp for a few days now (without the black out blind) and I really like waking to the light. It almost feels like I am sunbathing and I swear you can feel a (psychological) warmth. (Update – It’s still crucial to get real sunlight into the eyes within the first hour of waking too – even if its cloudy. This will help sleep.You cannot beat nature even with the best hacks.)
So, I am putting these 3 hacks into place. Pretty simple stuff and I will update you on how my sleep project goes… Watch this space and let me know if you have tried any of the above or would like to?