Given the ongoing changes to our rhythms of activity under the pressure of the covid crisis, it is maybe no surprise if we also experience challenges with our sleeping patterns and the efficiency of our sleep. Some people had difficulties sleeping already without covid crisis, since our sleep is always subject to a delicate balance of our energy cycles and especially sensitive to our stress management.
Here are some basic things to consider to have a better and more rejuvenating sleep:
- Make sure you mattress is neither too old (max 10 years) nor too soft (generally, the firmer the better)
- Your bedroom needs to be dark so your body is able to produce melatonin, a hormone to help your body sleep
- Dim down your lights already one hour before bedtime
- Switch off all electrical devices one hour before bedtime and leave them outside your bedroom
- Leave your work outside of the bedroom
- Use a couple of drops lavender essential oil in a diffuser or oil burner. Lavender induces relaxation and is used successfully to help people with anxiety or poor sleep.
- Drink a glass of cool (not icy!) water before you go to bed
- Give yourself (or your partner) a short foot massage before you lie down sleeping
- You can also work more specifically, following the instructions in this short video on Hand Reflexology for Sleep from the Association of Reflexologists (duration 5:36 minutes)
- Meditate and/or say a night-time prayer before going to bed (try my English and German translations of Kirtan Sohila)
- Go through your past day with a positive and grateful attitude towards everything that happened and that you have accomplished
- Create some motivating vision for the next day, know you will wake up fresh and in good spirits at your chosen time
- It helps if your wake-up time is the same every day and as early as possible to allow for your needed hours of sleep
- Be grateful for all the good things in your life generally
- Try long and deep breathing through the left nostril (blocking the right nostril): It stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system and calms you down
- Try falling asleep while lying on your right side: This supports breathing through the left nostril and lightens the pressure on the heart
Please note that even one or two things from the above list might already bring desired improvement. Simply start trying what seems most interesting and appealing to you. The idea it not that you have to implement everything immediately all the time!