The habit of sleeping

Some people fall asleep easily. My father is one of them. He usually doesn’t even remember putting his head on the pillow. I’m not like that, unfortunately. I can toss and turn for hours, becoming more frustrated with the minute.

Improving your sleep is the single most important thing you can do to increase the quality of life. This is true for everybody, but even more so after treatment. The strategy I have used to get me sleeping again is simple, although it does require some practicing:

Create a habit of going to bed.

I hear you thinking – but I already go to bed every day? Well, chances are you don’t really go to bed, right? If you’re anything like me, you just decide ‘oh it’s eleven o’clock, I should sleep now’. You lie down and expect to be dreaming in five minutes. You don’t have to be a genius to understand that it doesn’t work that way.

Implement an evening routine.

For example: around 21:30 I turn off the bright lights in my room and switch to candles or soft light. I replace my shoes for my beautiful bright orange bedroom slippers and my contact lenses for glasses. I put the laptop aside and everything else that requires my brain to be active. I prepare breakfast for the next morning, lay out my medication. I burn some incense or palo santo, listen to calm music, read a book, talk with the friends I might be with. Some evenings I end up in bed at 22:00, sometimes I sleep at midnight. The point is to allow your body and mind to wind down and prepare for deep rest.

Think of it as a ritual of going to bed. 

Try out different activities to find out what works for you. A few suggestions:

  • Give yourself a gentle massage of your face, hands, feet
  • Listen to a guided meditation or visualization
  • Take a warm shower or bath
  • Paint, color or draw
  • Prepare and drink a cup of herbal tea
  • Do some yoga or stretching
  • Use essential oils, such as lavender
  • Water your plants
  • Take a relaxed stroll around the block
  • Journal
  • Listen to music: piano or calm classical music
  • In bed: listen to nature or rain sounds (you can find lists of this on YouTube or Spotify and download a sleep timer app on your phone)

Once you have decided on a sequence of evening actions, stick to it for at least ten days. You will probably notice the difference after a week or so.

 

Do you have a sleeping routine? Let me know if you’re going to try this method!

Are thoughts and fears keeping you up at night instead? I will write about that soon, do sign up for the newsletter if you haven’t done so already ♡.

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