Is an overactive mind, stress, or aches in the body preventing you to have a good quality sleep?
I’m a mother of two young children, a yoga teacher, an entrepreneur, and a wife who’s daily life oftentimes is rather busy and hectic. I used to sleep very badly mostly because of stress and constant thoughts and worries running through my mind day in day out. It was only until I started to intensively study and practice yoga asana, meditation, and breathing that I managed to calm my brain and my nervous system before going to bed. This made a huge difference in my sleep quality!
A few years ago, I decided to make a change in my evening routine. I promised myself to put sleep at the top of my priority list simply because I was tired of feeling tired and needing caffeine to keep me going through the day. The biggest and most powerful change was to make the last hour before going to bed as peaceful and pleasant as possible (with small kids this is sometimes easier said than done but we do our best and accept the rest).
This meant ditching all the distracting things (like browsing the internet, snacking, tv, etc.) and switching them into calming things like a warm shower, oil massage, restorative yoga & stretching, breathing exercises, meditation, and reading a book.
Most of our waking hours we spend by living from the mind. We think, analyze, calculate, communicate, and do most of our daily tasks using the power of the mind. Our minds are constantly active and working towards something or are clinging to something belonging in the past. If we don’t give our minds the chance to rest and recharge we get into trouble. If we let our mind keep running an eternal marathon, it will eventually burn out leaving us lying scattered, paralyzed, and breathless along our journey of life.
When bedtime’s approaching we should avoid strong stimulation and instead, support our nervous system to switch from the fight or flight mode (sympathetic mode) into the rest & digest mode (parasympathetic mode). And here’s where yoga, meditation, and breathing become very helpful tools. In yoga, we have something that will create a response of calmness.
For us to sleep better, our bodies need to settle into a parasympathetic mode where rest and healing can happen. Oftentimes, especially after a busy day, our minds are racing, our breath is fast and shallow, and we might experience aches and pains in the body which can all disturb our sleep.
We need to free our minds from the constant chatter so that we can easily fall asleep and our brain can reset itself during the night. Releasing physical tension, calming the mind, and freeing the breath brings our whole being in a parasympathetic mode and prepares us for a restful night.
I have created an ONLINE class called ‘Yoga for a good night’s sleep’ that is designed specifically to wind down after an active day. During this 45 minutes class, we will meditate to bring calmness to the mind, learn to breathe fully and deeply, and release bodily tension through specific yoga poses. Especial attention is given to the hips, legs, and spine. This class is suitable for all levels of yogis from complete beginners to more advanced students. The first class is on the 21st of December and as a Christmas present to You, I offer the first class for FREE! Just send me a message if you would like to join and I will send you a Zoom link to join the class. You will learn a powerful yet simple and easy meditation technique to calm your mind, one breathing technique that has the power to take you into the lalaland in no time, and simple stretches and restorative yoga poses to free the body from physical discomfort.