Monday, December 01, 2008

Sleep Better, Feel Better - Tips on Getting a Better Night's Rest

Sleep is more important than most people realize, and without it - we are much more susceptible to illness, not to mention - cranky, irritable, drowsy at all the wrong times, more prone to accidents, lack of brain power, mental stress, and overworking of the internal organs, which leads to an even greater vulnerability to illness. Over a long period of time, the result could be an overstressed heart, liver, kidneys, and immune system - resulting in disease.

Getting enough sleep (or rather - NOT getting enough sleep) is an ongoing problem nearly all Americans suffer. While most of know we need more, and our bodies are telling us in subtle ways. For others, their bodies are screaming out with loud symptoms, and even then - people tend to ignore the problem. But with proper rest, the body becomes more productive, and the well-rested mind is much more alert. The well-rested body has more energy, and is less tired after work or play.

Tips on Getting Better Rest - And a Good Night's Sleep

  • Listen to relaxing music. Avoid television, or other visual stimulants - which could keep the eyes open!
  • Avoid oversleeping, which will "reset" the internal clock, pushing back your next night's sleep.
  • Drink a glass of relaxing tea - such as chamomile, valerian, catnip, or hops.
  • Take a hot shower or relaxing bath. If you opt for a shower, be sure to allow the temperature to remain steady for more than 10 minutes, which should help induce sleep. (Temperature changes of less than 4 minutes are likely to produce stimulation.)
  • Develop a regular sleeping routine, and practice it every night. This will help your body prepare for sleep, and help you enter the right frame of mind.
Relax your body and create your own space to feel "at home" and relaxed. You'll find that if you take the time to enjoy your own space, your own time, and ignore the problems of the world while you drift into sleep, your body will become more relaxed and less stressed over time. While you're lying in bed is not the time to go over your life's problems - that will surely keep you awake. Try to remember, you'll be in better shape to focus on solutions after a good night's rest. There is a reason they call it "taking a load off" - you know!