In 2021, sleep care is the new self-care! We all know sleep has numerous health benefits (as well as anti-aging benefits!) – but how many of you guys *actually* get at least 7 hours of uninterrupted sleep every night? I’ve talked about a few ways I like to calm my mind before bed and how you can reset your sleep habits on the blog, but I want to talk about the importance of investing in rest and how you can do it.
Sleep is vital to our physical health and emotional wellbeing; it’s just as important as eating healthy and exercising. It’s an essential function that allows your mind and body to recharge and repair. Rest is a necessity rather than a reward – and investing in your sleep care will bring more intention to a more restful regimen. Good sleep can:
-Boost your immune system
-Prevent weight gain
-Strengthen your heart and reduce risks of heart disease
-Boost your mood and reduce stress
-Increase productivity and exercise performance
-Improve concentration and memory
Here are a few ways you can elevate your bedtime routine:
-NIGHT AFFIRMATIONS. I feel like we’re usually encouraged to include daily affirmations in our morning routine, but I found that sleep affirmations are just as soothing and empowering. By focusing on the messages, it helps interrupt any negative or stressful thought patterns from the day. Check out this list of sleep affirmations!
-AROMATHERAPY. Essential oils have numerous health benefits, like antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal properties, activating the immune system, calming the nerves and stimulating digestion – but they’re also a natural and safe alternative to pharmaceutical interventions for mild sleep disturbances. If you don’t have an essential oil diffuser, you can add a few drops of essential oils to a spray bottle filled with distilled water and spray in your room or on your pillows, rub diluted essential oils onto the appropriate areas of your skin or place a few drops on a cotton pad, light aromatherapy candles or rub a few drops between your palms before deeply inhaling. To unwind and promote sleep, I love using lavender, cedarwood, bergamot, chamomile, ylang ylang and jasmine.
-SLEEP YOGA. Adding restorative yoga poses to your bedtime routine can help promote deeper sleep! Try floor-based poses – but hold them longer than you would in a yoga class. This encourages your body to relax and your mind to get out of fight or flight mode.
-MEDITATE. Meditation is a relaxation technique that helps quiet the mind and body – and even reduce insomnia and other sleep troubles by lowering blood pressure, decreasing stress hormones and basically just promoting overall calmness. You guys know how much I love TM, but if you’re new to meditation, apps like Headspace and Calm have easy-to-follow guided meditations! I also suggest practicing breathwork alongside meditation to release any mental, physical and emotional tension.
-INVEST IN SLEEPWEAR. High-quality mattresses and bedding are important for a good night’s sleep, but being comfortable in what you wear to bed is just as important. Definitely check out my roundup of silky sleepwear I’m loving right now! There’s just something so glamorous – and comfortable – about slipping into silk just to go to bed.
-CREATE A COZY SPACE. Your bedroom can definitely affect your quality of rest, from temperature and light to noise and bedding. Creating a cozy space that’s comfortable, screen-free and clutter-free will help eliminate distractions, establish a bedroom that caters to sleep above all else and make rest a priority!
What does your sleep care routine look like? I’d love to hear!