My husband and I almost made it through the pandemic without contracting Covid-19. We had spent time in the Grand Canyon, remember my mother-in-law, who had passed away a year ago. Part of the healing process included a trip to Utah to visit my husband’s Aunt, who sounded like her sister and would likely be a salve on an open wound. During our visit, Aunt Cathy invited her neighbors over. Five days later, she called to say the neighbors had tested positive for Covid-19. Thankfully, Aunt Cathy and her husband, were vaccinated with the first vaccine and did not contract it and neither did my parents. There’s always several silver linings and this experience was no different. How is this related to tips on getting good sleep?
I knew I had to combat the illness and ensure I got plenty of sleep. In no way did I want to get sick enough to need hospital intervention. I put together a bed time routine to help prepare my body for sleep and I was rewarded for my efforts. My Fitbit registered 8 to 9 hours of sleep each night. Despite a history of bronchitis and pneumonia, I was able to heal at home. The above graphic illustrates what strategies I used to accomplish my sleep goal. These tips are good for allergy season as well. Those who struggle with seasonal allergies are familiar with the struggle.
1- Let taking a warm shower be a part of your transition to sleep. Washing away any pollen or other allergens that cause inflamation will help you rest through the night. Invest in a pleasantly fragrant soap or bath wash that will help calm your senses. Steer clear of invigorating scents and keep those for the morning routines.
2-Invest in an air purifier that can handle the dimensions of your bedroom. The appliance does not have to be large if your room is small. Note how frequently the filters need changing and add the date to your planner. Close closet doors that lead to the bedroom and start the purifier as part of your wind down routine. We bought an Aeramax by Fellows at Staples that does the job. It’s got a lot of lights on it but I wear a sleep mask so I don’t care. https://www.staples.com/fellowes-aeramax-true-hepa-tower-air-purifier-white-9320601/product_24442969
3-Dab a calming essential oil on each ear lobe. I tried Lavender and found out that I’m allergic. I use Döterra’s Adaptiv roll on. Whatever you choose, ensure you’re not allergic to it and that it’s a relaxing blend and not invigorating.
4-Use a sleep mask. I am in love with this sleep mask because of the velcro straps in the back and that it’s a total black out. Even though you think the light doesn’t bother you; I encourage you to try a sleep mask for 7 days. Physiologically, your body understand black outs and totally interprets darkness as night and time to sleep. The stark contrast between light and dark helps the body understand when it’s time to sleep and solidifies your circadian rhythm. Please note that I am not in a relationship with Amazon and not getting credit for this recommendation. I recommend it because it has made a difference for me. I can wake up in the early morning to use the restroom and go back to sleep with the help of the eye mask.
5- Ear plugs are helpful if you pay attention to the noises instead of sleeping and need to block those noises. I use regular foam ear plugs. Once you push them in, they pop out but I learned how to keep them in the curve of the outer ear and pointed to the canal. It seems to work fine there.
6- Keep a plant or two in your bedroom to transform the carbon dioxide your breathing produces. It has a purpose and looks beautiful while doing it. Pothos plants are hearty and can do well in full to partial sun. They come in variegated, neon, and regular.
7- Clean off your night stand and just keep the items you need to get the sleep you deserve. Make it a beautiful, un cluttered piece next to you. Take out the piles of work you have on there and guard that space. Let that space exist only to help support your sleep.
Regardless of whether you are fighting an illness, you still need sleep for a variety of emotional, intellectual, and preventive health reasons. The biggest obstacle to getting sleep is our own mindset about detaching ourselves from our to do list and calling it a day. I hope you give yourself permission stop and allow yourself to discover the sweetness of slumber. Take care of yourself and remain healthy and living your purpose.