Saturday morning you wake up after a restful 12 hours of sleep, enjoy a relaxing breakfast and some quiet reading time before getting dressed.
Perhaps you get to bed late because you have to clean the kitchen and fold the laundry after putting the kids to bed. Someone wakes up at 4:30am needing you. Someone else wakes up at 6:30 ready to start and the day and wanting breakfast.
The second scenario is certainly closer to reality in my house. As a parent, it can be hard to get enough rest, but it is vitally important. The Center for Disease Control states that adults need 7-8 hours of sleep a night. Not getting adequate sleep on a regular basis can lead to a host of chronic diseases and conditions such as:
· Cardiovascular disease
Those last ten pounds you just can’t seem to lose? Mood swings and brain fog? A lack of sufficient rest can be a major contributing factor.
The next question is HOW we get enough sleep. While reading a list of ideas won’t necessarily get you to bed earlier or to sleep once we get there. I can give you some suggestions to get you started in that direction.
1. Go to bed at the same time every night
2. Exercise daily
3. Create a relaxing environment
o Comfortable bedding (My favorite are jersey sheets), a dark room, no electronics
4. Avoid using your bed for anything other than sleeping, reading and sex.
5. Give yourself time to transition to sleep mode
o Turn of the TV and computer an hour before heading to bed
o Try a warm bath with lavender or mediation as part of your bedtime ritual
If you do all of these things and cannot get your brain to calm down enough for sleep try writing down your to-do list and/or writing in your gratitude journal before you turn off the light.
Remember you are important. If you aren’t at your best you can’t take care of anyone else.