So, how’s your sleep? A better night’s sleep was the first action step on my list when I first learned I had complete adrenal depletion.
I was always so exhausted but then couldn’t get a solid night of sleep. I would fall asleep easily, but staying asleep was not happening and no matter what, I woke up still feeling completely exhausted.
And I know I’m not alone, whether or not your adrenals are taxed (although they probably are!)
What’s interesting is research indicates that people know what they need to do to get better sleep but they don’t act on it.
I’m guessing if I asked you, you could tell me off the top of your head, three things you could do that would help with your sleep, but you aren’t doing them.
And, if I’m being honest, I am one of those people!
So I thought I would write this post, share a bevy of ideas (in case there are new ideas for you) AND inspire you to take action and make a change.
These ideas are the ones you will probably be most used to hearing. I encourage you to read them with a new perspective: as the avenue to help you with whatever it is you are looking forward to most on your road to quality sleep.
If you are ready, I’m ready to do this with you.
I have created free printables of each one along with a form for you to put a plan together for yourself to help you. (Download below
AND I have two yoga videos for you to enjoy to support the process. One is literally an in bed yoga series (kinda fun) and the other is a quick series you can do on your mat before crawling into bed to quiet the energy of the day.
GIFT FOR YOU:
Inspire yourself to take action
First of all, let’s get set up for success. We need to make sure you are going to make the change you want to make!
The very best way to inspire yourself to take action is to think about what it will be like on the other side.
Why do you want a better night of sleep? How do you think life will be when you are able to feel well-rested?
I know it might seem a bit silly, I mean, duh, but stick with me. I want you to get specific.
How good do you feel when you are well-rested? How well do you relate to the world? Do you enjoy life more?
Think in as many tangible terms as you can about WHY you want to sleep better. Who will be affected by you feeling well-rested? How will your workday feel? Will you be able to exercise? Eat better?
The desire for these outcomes is what will help you feel more inspired around taking action and truly changing your routines for better sleep.
Write WHY you want a great night’s sleep on the top of your “My Sleep Plan” planning sheet.
Life Coaching Tips
Let’s start with a few general tips that can help you get a better night’s sleep. No, you don’t need to do all of them (although you certainly can! 🙂 ). Pick the ones that you feel you would follow through on.
Tip #1 Technology: The energy that comes off of our devices, cell phones, tvs, computers, ipads, etc, stimulates us in unhealthy ways. Taking a 60-90 min break will help you release some of the energy to help you sleep. Also, be sure to keep your cell phone/computer out of your bedroom (or at the very least use airplane mode) and unplug your wifi at night (and ask your neighbors to do so). Trust me, it makes a difference!
Tip #2 Don’t eat too late: You do not want to feel stuffed as you try to fall asleep. Through practice, I have found not eating at least four hours before bed is an ideal amount of time for me. No, it’s not always possible, but it is something I make sure happens on night’s when a good night of sleep is crucial. Play with the number for yourself.
Tip #3: Caffeine and sugar: If you drink caffeine or eat sugar, figure out how late you can consume them and not have them affect your sleep and then take action. If you are recovering from adrenal fatigue/depletion, I recommend cutting out sugar and caffeine altogether since the artificial stimulation is really not good for your system.
Tip #4: Make your bedroom space sacred: Only use it for the “Rs”: rest, relaxation and reconnecting with your mate. You may want to make it feel extra relaxing and comfortable for you with the color scheme, pillows, twinkle lights (I love twinkle lights!), diffuser, etc.
Creating an Evening Routine
We all need an evening routine that sets us up for a good night of sleep. Here are a few ideas for you to consider for an evening routine as well as a few tips to consider throughout the day. Choose the ones that fit you and add them to your “My Sleep Plan” form.
Before we get into specifics, you need to make three decisions:
How much time do you want to dedicate to your evening routine?
Be honest with yourself here. You may dream of a glorious 2 hour routine with a bath, aromatherapy, restorative yoga, candlelight, but if you know your life is full and that won’t happen not matter how hard you try, you are setting yourself up for failure.
How much time do you really think you will put into your evening routine? Even 5 minutes, used with intention, can make a difference so be honest with yourself and your ability to stick to things.
That said, I often find that once you get started with a little bit of a routine, it is easier to add time. Plus, with more rest, you may find you are more productive during the day and will be able to have more time at night to dedicate to your nighttime routine.
What time do you want to go to bed?
What is your ideal bedtime? The best time for most people is asleep by 10:30. After that most of us rev up with a second wind. The second wind is not a good thing, especially with adrenal depletion. The second wind is actually our bodies tapping into adrenalin to get us energized and that taxes our adrenals even more.
That said, every body is a little different and you want to find what works for you. But let it be intentional, not just when you happen to fall into bed every day.
How many hours of sleep do you need?
Do you know? Most adults sleep time is based on what they feel they can fit into their schedule. (Read: From when you fall into bed until the alarm goes off and you race to make it to work on time.)
The ideal way to assess how much sleep you really need is on vacation, when you can go to bed easily at an ideal time and sleep as late as you want until you are well-rested. Of course, that is assuming you are going to bed at an ideal time as well.
BUT if you can’t do that, most adults generally need between 7 and 9 hours of sleep.
I found when I was deep in my adrenal fatigue I needed more like 10, and even then woke feeling exhausted. But, of course, that was due to the condition of my adrenals.
Now I need about 9 hours.
If you aren’t sure, start with at least 7, and a good bedtime and see how you feel when you wake up.
IDEAS FOR AN EVENING ROUTINE:
Here are a few specific tips for you to spark your creativity.
Tip #1 Yoga: Help you release the tension of the day. Scroll down for two videos from me to you and download my free printable for yourself (I share my favorite sleep poses!) Holding tension in the body will keep you from relaxing enough to sleep. Even taking just 5 minutes to stretch a bit will help you sleep more deeply.
Tip #2: Essential Oils + Supplementation: Essential oils will definitely help! I will share with you a few of my favorites below. You also may find magnesium helpful, thyroid support and occasional melatonin can also help. (I’ll share specifics below).
Tip #3 Hot Bath: So many ways to make this a powerful bedtime ritual tool! Simply a hot bath is relaxing and, as your body cools, it gets sleepy. Add Epsom salts for a dose of magnesium (it is absorbed through the skin and helps you sleep) AND to help you clear the radiation from your technology. Add Young Living Frankincense oil to help even more with the radiation release. (The last suggestion has simply been my experience. Test it for yourself and see!)
Note: When adding essential oils to your bath, mix them first into the Epsom Salts so they emulsify and then pour them into the running water.
Tip #4 Reading: Grabbing a book and snuggling in for a brief reading time helps relax the body and mind. Just be sure the book itself isn’t too stimulating.
Tip #5 Journaling + Meditation/Prayer + Gratitude: Evening is a great time for quiet reflection. Looking back on your day and reflecting on what you were grateful for helps put your mind in the best place for sleep.
In the download, I have pictured a few of my favorite poses for relaxing the body and getting read for sleep.
If you would rather I talk you through a calming series, here are two videos. In both videos, I share with you essential oils I like to use for a good night’s sleep but if you scroll down, I offer a more complete list.
A quickie routine to do while in bed.
A little longer routine for on your mat.
Before Bed Yoga Flow
Yoga in Bed
Let’s talk about the essential oils and essential oil infused supplements I use to support a better night of sleep.
Both contain melatonin for a deeper sleep. Sleep Essence also contains nervous system supporting oils such as Lavender Vitality and grounding oils like Valerian & Vetiver.
Immupro contains immune supporting goodies such as antioxidants, zinc, selenium and mushrooms.
I like to keep both on the shelf for when I need it. I use Sleep Essence when life has me up thinking and Immupro when my immune system could use a little love. (I travel with Immupro. I never sleep well those first couple of nights and travel puts the immune system at a disadvantage.)
Thyromin: The thyroid is a gland like the adrenals. The thyroid is particularly challenged by toxic chemicals in our environment and can affect our sleep. Young Living has an awesome thyroid-support supplement that has made all the difference in my sleep: Thyromin.
Thyromin™ is a special blend of herbs, amino acids, minerals, and therapeutic-grade essential oils in a perfectly balanced formula that maximizes nutritional support for healthy thyroid function.
My favorite sleep oils!
Probably the most famous for calming oils. This one is perfect to diffuse, rub on feet, spray on pillow, whatever!
Amazing oil for that overactive brain. If you have a hard time falling asleep because of all the thoughts or those thoughts keep you up in the middle of the night, Cedarwood might be a solution for you. Take a drop and rub it on your neck right at the base of the brain.
For when you have the “crazies”, as I lovingly call them. You know, those moments when all you can think of are the 12 things you “need to do, should have done, wish you had 26 hours to the day”. Valor on your feet will draw all the ways you are torn and bring them down into your body. Amazing for sleep!
Not gonna lie, this one is stinky. No way around it. But so potent for loving your nervous system. Sleep will be amazing! Rub on feet and put on your socks — then you don’t have to smell it.
As for essential oils, the trick to using essential oils and sleep is to give them a chance to work. It can take more than just a few tries to get things going. Vetiver, for example, needs to be used for a couple of weeks to build up in the system to really help.
[Note: There is a reason I choose Young Living as a product partner after exhaustive research. There is no comparison when it comes to a natural support for the body. Please contact me directly if you would like to join my private, exclusive oily community. I like to give personalized service!
Click here for info on Young Living.]
Summary: Choose an action…
If you have been following me for awhile, you know I am ALL ABOUT doing something. I want to inspire real change, not just “that’s a great idea” but nothing happens.
All I want you to do is choose ONE action from this list. One. Comment below what that one thing is for an even great chance of following through.
And then commit to doing it for at least 3 days. Just 3.
You can totally do that!
Inspired Living Guru
Inspiring Life Coach + Yoga Educator
Let Laura inspire you to step into YOUR Extraordinary Life! Enjoy the life you are already living AND feel the excitement about the Big Dream that you are creating!
Laura uniquely blends her Life Coaching knowledge and vast experience with Yoga to create programs, classes and workshops that truly do bring mind and body together for positive change, inspiring people to live their most authentic life.