Ahhh, sleep. It is an integral segment of our daily 24 hours. However, according to a study from the CDC, 33% of American adults do not get enough sleep. That’s alarming; pun intended 🙂 If you are the one out of three who is lacking in sleep quality and/or quantity, do not let this keep you up at night; again, pun intended, LOL! Keep reading to learn 3 steps you can take tonight to begin improving your sleep.
Action: Create a Yin Bedroom
In traditional Chinese Feng Shui, the concept of yin and yang is one of the fundamental components that is addressed in harmonizing the home. The yang rooms are those that are active, well-lit, warmer, and louder. Yin rooms are passive, dim, cooler, and quiet. The bedroom is considered the most important yin space in your home. In fact, the bedroom is one of the top 3 spaces within the home that are prioritized for maximizing health, relationships, and prosperity.
How do we create a yin space within the bedroom you may be asking? By focusing on optimizing the characteristics mentioned above: dim, cool, quiet, and passive. Begin tonight by removing all electronic devices (achieving quiet) and all active equipment (achieving passive).
Action: Utilize Essential Oils
Essential oils are powerful supporters for improving your sleep hygiene.* There are several methods for incorporating essential oils into your bedtime routine: aromatic, topical, and internal.
Aromatic use is most commonly achieved through diffusing essential oils in a bedside diffuser. Additionally, inhaling the oil straight from the bottle is effective, as is placing a drop in the palm of your hand, rubbing hands together, then placing cupped hands over nose, and inhaling. Use these latter two methods until you purchase your diffuser this weekend.
Topical use of essential oils include applying oils to your bed linens and/or applying oils to your body. Linen sprays are easily blended by adding a calming oil, such as lavender, roman chamomile, jasmine, bergamot, clary sage, melissa, cedarwood, and ylang ylang, to a mixture of rubbing alcohol and distilled water. Do experiment with creating your signature blend. Always use a glass spray bottle, not plastic, as the essential oils will over time leach toxins from the plastic. Follow me on Instagram and Facebook via @zententionalliving to receive recipe ideas and more.
If applying oils to your body, be mindful of sensitivities. Some oils are considered “hot” and require dilution with a carrier oil such as fractionated coconut oil, almond oil, or avocado oil. “Warm” oils may require dilution for those with sensitive skin (children and elder adults) or other sensitivities. Always read labels before applying topically. Common areas of topical application include the bottoms of the feet, swipe across the forehead, swipe across the back of the neck, or apply to each temple. Note: a drop goes a long way; essential oils are potent.
Internal use of essential oils as part of a sleep routine can be beneficial as well.* If you plan on incorporating internal use, read all labels to ensure that the oil is safe for ingestion. Additionally, ensure that the oils are certified as therapeutic grade. Common methods of ingestion include adding a drop or two to a veggie cap, placing a drop on the tongue, or adding a drop or two to water, tea, or other beverage.
Action: Create an Evening Tea Time
While drinking coffee or other caffeinated drinks before bed is not recommended, herbal teas are naturally decaffeinated and may support your sleep hygiene routine. Common soothing bedtime herbal teas include chamomile, lavender, and valerian root. Many commercial brands are a blend of these popular soothing herbs. If you are adventurous, you may want to experiment with creating your own recipe. In a base of hot water, steep your choice of calming herbs and essential oils to create a signature blend. Do share your recipe in the comments if you decide to experiment with creating your own tea recipe! As stated above, ensure that the oils you choose are labeled for ingestion and follow all guidelines, and directions.
We all know how important it is for our health, relationships, and well-being to get a solid night’s sleep; yet one in three of us is not. Are you the one? If so, incorporate these 3 actions for several weeks. If you are curious to learn personalized strategies for optimizing you sleep, let’s chat!
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent disease.