Nav is a high achiever. She has lots on the go and tight deadlines to meet. She loves Chai lattes and spicy food. As much as she enjoys her busy schedule, it affects her sleep. She has a hard time falling asleep and wakes up anxious in the middle of the night unable to fall back asleep. Not getting enough sleep makes her grumpy and groggy. Not the best state of mind for a woman with plans for success. Yoga to the rescue! Here are 5 yogic secrets for Nav (and you) to get what you need – a good night’s sleep.
1. Lengthen and deepen your practice. 20 to 30 minutes of daily stretching and muscle strengthening cues the body to use sleep for regeneration and repair, resulting in a deeper quality of rest. A regular yoga practice helps manage stress and anxiety which are key triggers for sleeplessness. Try a morning or early evening practice time for best effects.
2. Pay attention to your feet. Wash your feet with warm water in the winter and cool water in the summer to relax and regulate your body temperature before bed. Another option is to massage your feet for five minutes before bed. There are thousands of nerve endings in the soles of the feet. These never endings or meridian points are connected to different organs and glands in the body. Massaging the feet can help to relax your entire system. Engaging in a quiet and connective activity before bed allows your body to set an internal rhythm for sleep. Try sharing a foot massage with your partner, children or parents.
3. Massage your head by using a wooden comb. According to the ancients, using natural fibers to work with your crowning glory protects your hair and strengthens your aura. A strong aura keeps negativity away. Negativity includes, you guessed it, stress inducing situations.
4. Breathe through your left nostril. Sit cross legged and use your right thumb to cover the right nostril. Keep the fingers of your right hand stiff and pointed straight up like an antenna. Breathing deeply like this for 5 minutes to relax and welcome sleep. For more information on these breathing tips – check out this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jb_iVAjE-No
5. Lie down on your stomach and turn your face to one side. Just as you are falling sleep, turn onto your right side allowing your left nostril to remain dominant. This is another way to provide the relaxation needed for a deep sleep.
Nav has since learned to relax in the evening. She eats four hours before sleeping and leaves the TV off most nights. She has re-connected with her body through her yoga practice and wakes up refreshed and ready to go. Phew.
Did this help? Drop me a line.