Hello again! Did you follow any of the tips from my first blog post by either curtailing your caffeine intake, reducing night-time liquids or setting a bedtime routine? I hope so – any one of them can make a big difference to the quality of your sleep and all three combined can have a great effect.
The last weekend before Christmas is also here so I am sharing three more tips for the over-thinkers amongst us! Some of us find that our daytime activities including confrontations, opportunities missed and perceived injustices wizzzzzzzzzzzz around our minds as soon as we lay down to sleep. These are great tips if that is you!
1. Write things down before bed.
Write down what you achieved, what you forgot to do, and what you are going to do tomorrow along with anything that made you angry. This can be a great way to wind down and clear your mind a little. Think of it as filing things away that you don’t need on your desk overnight…..!
Rather than running through situations in your mind that did not go your way, just look at what you could do next time under similar circumstances, write it down and let it go.
So many people say to me ‘I can’t meditate! I’ve tried but just I can’t!’. And yet – YOU CAN! Like most important things in life, it takes practice and here’s the thing, if it doesn’t ‘work’ for you at first, so what? It doesn’t matter, the world isn’t going to end and meditation should not be stressful. Why not try meditation at bedtime for one week and see how much easier it is by the end of the week, and how very relaxing it is. This relaxation is the key – meditating slows your heartbeat, which relaxes you and prepares you better for sleeping. I use a couple of Apps for my meditation. Relax Melodies is my favourite and it is free to download although I think you have to make a one-off payment for some of the functions. It is the most used app on my phone as it has melodies, meditations, bedtime stories for adults (no, not saucy ones!) and children and even bedtime moves to help you wind down. The last two things I do before laying down to sleep are to set my alarm for the morning then play the meditation I have chosen for the evening. Nine times out of ten I am asleep before the meditation finishes!
Meditation classes are great too. If you are local to me, Angele Tilly runs greats ones in Leyton Library - follow her on Instagram @dedicate_meditate to find out more.
A lot of meditation practices revolve around concentrating on our breath and this is for two reasons is for two reasons: slow breathing is relaxing, and focusing on our breath means we are not focusing on those unhelpful thoughts. Here is my favourite breathing exercise that you can use any time of day or night to calm down, with or without meditation:
Breathe in through your nose to the count of four. Picture the inhalation as a healing blue light, bringing in calm and positivity.
Breathe out through your mouth to the count of eight. Imagine all worries and negativity leaving your body with the exhalation. Let your shoulders drop down at the same time.
And yes – in for four, out for eight! Don’t force it, as then it becomes stressful but the more you practice the easier it becomes. I don’t like to brag but I can now go in for four, out for twelve and it is SUPER relaxing – just try it!
I hope you are enjoying these sleep tips and my new blog! It is going to be a monthly blog but I thought I would sneak in this second post before Christmas, as I want you all to sleep well during what can be a stressful period.
For some, Christmas is just a reminder of those that have passed on. If that is you, Reiki might be a treatment that you gain something from. My Reiki sessions are my most affordable treatments because I do want them to be accessible to as many people as possible. With Reiki I act as a bridge between the energy of the universe and you. It sounds strange, doesn’t it?! But many people who have a particular spiritual belief feel a connection with the memories of those that have passed, perhaps because Reiki of all treatments is the one that practitioners share with love. Whatever your belief, we believe that everyone can benefit from Reiki. Let me know if you would like to know more.
For me Christmas is spent with my dear brother Alexander in Guildford and then from the 28th volunteering at a homeless shelter in Newham. It is very rewarding, as giving something to those that have virtually nothing is always a privilege. Send me a message if you want to join me!
Whatever you are doing to see off 2019 and see in 2020, may you receive some love and
kindness during this period, find relaxation and experience the joys and not stresses of family time! x