Sleep and Dreams: The Greatest Cosmic Gift
Anciently, sleep and dreams were considered, "THE GREATEST COSMIC GIFT".
Brilliant cultures taught this because they knew that if you practised the 7 Principles of Health regularly, the cosmos would deliver to you the greatest gift of all, which we know as SLEEP.
A good, healthy sleep not only gives you happy feet when you go into a new day, there is an overwhelming amount of research that proves it also enhances:
- Your ability to focus
- Your memory's effectiveness
- Your recovery and energy
- Your digestive cycle
- Emotional harmony and balance
On a grander scale, making quality sleep a consistent part of your routine will simply lead to a better quality of life over time and distance.
On the flip side, poor sleep patterns or sustained periods of inconsistent or inadequate sleep are associated with increased injuries, hypertension, obesity and even depression.
The Center of Disease Control in the US estimates that 1 in 3 adults don't get enough sleep.
And unfortunately, if these unhealthy sleep habits have formed during childhood, they can be much harder to break as an adult, unless you're prepared to make some lifestyle changes.
Where it all starts... how much sleep do children need?
If you have children, making sure that they get enough sleep will set them up for healthy sleep patterns later in life.
Sleep is necessary for healthy growth and development and getting this right early is critical.
"Newborns" right through to about age 5 should have in the range of 10-13 hours daily.
School-aged children up to around 17 years old ideally should be getting 8-10 hours daily.
The symptoms of Sleep Deprivation
Adults typically get sleepy and groggy when they haven’t had enough sleep, but for children, a lack of sleep can have the opposite effect.
A common indicator that children aren’t sleeping enough is in their behaviour: Excess hyperactive energy is often a result of sleep disturbances and or deprivation of sleep.
5 Tips To Help You Sleep & Dream Better
- Create a sleep routine - Try to go to bed at the same time each night and awake at a similar time each morning. Your goal should be to get 8 hours of quality sleep each night. If you work at night, your timing will be different, but nevertheless, still try to create a consistent 'daytime' sleep routine that works best.
- Create a bedtime ritual: An hour before bed, go for a 5-minute walk, read a book, or jot down a few things you achieved in your day. Whatever it is, make sure it's an activity that calms you to help you relax and unwind. Have a warm shower or bath and put your PJ's on. All of these things are your mental and emotional triggers for a good night's sleep, similar to when you read a child a bedtime story
- Dinner/Go light after dark - Avoid eating a heavy meal after dark whenever possible, or at least, don't eat within 2 hours of bedtime. The word 'supper' meant a light 'liquid' meal after dark e.g. soups. If you need something to satisfy or settle you prior to bed, an ancient wisdom was to have a small cup of warm organic raw milk and honey (almond milk is ok too if you prefer) just prior to bedtime
- A sleep-supportive bedroom - This means removing possible distractions like your iPhone or iPad and ensure these devices are on silent, or better still, placed in another room when you retire for the night. Open windows, turn off A/C and allow fresh air to circulate or use a fan if you have no windows. By doing this, you'll be breathing electrified air at night to help clear the bronchioles and keep your respiratory system healthy
- Essential Oils - Lightly spraying your room or pillow with essential oils like Lavender to calm your nervous system. Additionally, soaking in a warm bath or placing a few drops of Lavender into a diffuser and setting it next to your bedside table will settle and relax you so that you'll sleep and dream like a baby. Learn more in the blog, How to Sleep Better With Essential Oils. A favourite tried and tested blend for deep sleep is Lavender Peace Restful Blend...