If you have one aim to help improve your general health, it should be to take better care of yourself. Self care is something that lots of us neglect to do, in the rush to look after everyone else around us. This is a real shame, as taking better care of ourselves, through things like exercise and healthy eating can make us happier and more productive.
One area of self care that I aim to improve on is sleep. I know that over the last year, as lockdowns and home working and schooling have taken their toll, I struggled with sleep. I could not establish a sleep pattern, spent far too many hours working into the night and burning the midnight oil, and, as a consequence, was often tired and irritable in the mornings. In addition, I often suffered from insomnia as I struggled to relax and wind down, and therefore couldn’t get to sleep once I went to bed. I often found myself getting up in the middle of the night and sitting reading, trying to lull myself to sleep.
Before Bedtime – Make a Routine
Of course, the relaxation of our bodies should start long before we actually go to bed. We should start our wind down once our working day is over. I find that a soothing bath is a good way to get rid of the aches and pains of the day that has passed, and that, once again, having a routine can aid the relaxation. I love to read in the bath, something light that I can lose myself in, like a chick lit novel. This helps to free my mind from the fog of the day.
I use products at night that not only help to restore and revitalise my skin, but can also aid relaxation. My current choice are the CBD products from Ethica, and in particular their CBD Infused facial scrub and night cream. These are products that really improve the quality of your skin, they nourish, moisturise and soothe, all while you are sleeping. As a perimenopausal woman, I also love the fact that the use of CBD also helps with the middle age skin irritations like itchiness and tightness, things that seem to be much worse at night. EthicaCBD products are also chocked full of natural oils that make your skin feel softer and improve the elasticity and general appearance.
If you are struggling to sleep, then EthicaCBD can also help you to ‘dream and recharge’ with their specially formulated night time CBD Oil. This is a product that is so easy to add into your night time regime, you simply put the drops, that are infused with chamomile, zinc and lavender, under your tongue for a couple of minutes before swallowing. Many people will swear to the positive effects of using a targeted CBD oil at night time, particularly those that have long term sleep problems, so this is well worth trying if you are constantly tired and worn out come morning. The drops are vegan and gluten free, so they really are perfect for everyone.
Other items that may help include pillow sprays which allow you to continue your relaxation once you are out of the bath and ready for bed.
Create A Relaxing Environment
Establishing a sleep pattern is actually not as hard as it sounds. Banishing all social media from the bedroom is definitely a good start, you are supposed to be sleeping so why do you need your phone on your bedside table? Your room needs to be a relaxing environment, so aim for soft colours in your decor – I think you will find it hard to relax in a bright red or blue bedroom. Blackout blinds are a good idea, they block out both natural and streetlights from your vision.
Another thing that can help you to establish a sleep pattern is a good old fashioned alarm clock. If you think carefully about it, we help our children to establish a sleep pattern by giving them a routine, going to bed at the same time, and then getting up at the same time each morning. We can do the same by going to bed a little earlier, and then setting a time to get up by on our alarm clocks, This should help train our bodies and hopefully get us the amount of sleep that we really need.
A milky Drink
Once bathed I like a glass of milk before bed. I used to drink coffee, but now try to avoid caffeine, and, as I don’t actually like malted milky drinks, I just tend to drink milk itself – you could warm it up but I just drink it cold.
What do you do to help you sleep better?