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How to Get a Good Night of Sleep

How to get a good night of sleep

Your health will be weakened unless you know how to get a good night of sleep.  Lack of sleep can make you feel depressed, weak, cranky, unable to concentrate and emotional. Most of us can deal with a night or two of lost sleep, but sometimes it can extend into weeks, months, and sometimes years.

Insomnia can be due to poor diet, lifestyle, over-stimulation, postpartum, travel, sleeping in an unfamiliar place, overuse of caffeine, alcohol, extreme temperatures, or the inability to stop the mind (everything seems bigger and more important at 3 a.m.).

Insomnia can occur at all ages and to all constitutions (body/mind types), but generally, it’s most common in women over the age of 50 with a Vata Constitution. Like everything else in Ayurveda, how much sleep we need to feel good depends on what our doshas are.

How to Get a Good Night of Sleep

how to get a good night of sleepKeep a regular sleep schedule of going to bed at 10 p.m.

There are three master cycles in each day. (Each cycle of the day has certain qualities that are supportive of different activities). If you go to bed around 10 pm, your body is under the influence of the qualities of heavy, slow and stable which are supportive of sleep.

how to get a good night of sleepTake a warm (not hot) bath to soothe your nervous system

Also, in cold climates or winter, make sure your feet are warm. It’s tough to sleep with cold feet.

how to get a good night of sleepGive yourself a warm oil massage

Pay particular attention to your head and feet. A warm oil massage is called Abhyanga (Abby-UNGA) in Ayurveda, and it’s a beautiful nighttime practice for inducing sleep.

how to get a good night of sleepWarm milk with a pinch of Cardamom

Warm milk with a pinch of cardamom can promote peaceful sleep. You can also add some nutmeg, cinnamon and crushed balanced almonds for a supercharged variation.

Herbal remedies

  • Ayurveda considers the following herbs useful for promoting sound sleep,how to get a good night of sleep and relaxation:
  • Jatamamsi
    Ashwagandha
    Shankhpushpi
    Chamomile
    Brahmi.
    I have had great success with 2 Ashwagandha and LifeSpa Ojas Nightly Tonic 20 minutes before bedtime. This is my go-to night time Ayurvedic superfood.

Gentle pressure on the two marma points

There are two marma points on each side of the temples. Apply gentle pressure with the essential oil of Sandalwood oil using alternating clockwise and counterclockwise movements with your index fingers.

how to get a good night of sleepUse Essential Oils

Lavender, Neroli, Valerian root, Vetiver or Chamomile in a diffuser are very soothing to your nervous system.

Learn Yoga Nidra

What's yoga nidraWhat is Yoga Nidra? Yoga Nidra means “yogic sleep”. It’s a technique which enables you to enter a profound state of relaxation and restoration, and paves the way for deep sleep.

So-Hum Meditation

Follow your breath, and on the inhalation repeat “So” and exhale “Hum” while keeping your attention on the area between your eyebrows known as the “third-eye”.

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how to get a good night of sleepAvoid caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol which are stimulants.

Avoid heavy meals

Eat your last meal before  6 pm. Ideally, the last meal should be around sunset. Despite what you think, falling asleep requires energy and it’s difficult to fall asleep if all your energy is tied up with digestion.

how to get a good night of sleepGet sunlight during the day and make it pitch black at night.

Back in the caveman days, humans got plenty of sunlight during the day, and they didn’t have the artificial light and plenty of activities to keep them awake. Our brains have evolved to still operate on this schedule, so make sure to get sunlight during the day and wear an eye mask at night to make it pitch black. If you live in a climate with low winter sunshine consider a light therapy lamp.

how to get a good night of sleepAvoid artificial light from technology

Power down your device, cell phone, computer, or television an hour or so before bed. The light exposure suppresses the production of melatonin, the hormone secreted by the pineal gland that controls sleep.

If All Else Fails….

Just lay quietly in bed with an awareness of your body. The WORST thing you can do is worry that you won’t be able to function well the next day. This only adds to more anxiety. Your body can rest and repair itself from resting quietly. 

Keep practicing the above recommendations and never resign yourself to insomnia even if you’ve had it for years. Sleep is one of the three pillars of health. The other two are food (digestion) and sex (creativity) so if you’re not getting the number of hours that are required for your constitution (body/mind type) you may not feel your best.

Being awake at 3 am is usually never a happy place, but it’s never too late to learn how to get a good night of sleep.

Please don’t hesitate to ask me questions in the comment area below. I’m here to help you out and I would love nothing more for you to be the healthiest version of yourself.

Let me know if you need anything and I will be sure to get back within “hours” most of the time.

how to get a good night of sleep

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About the author

Jackie Parker

8 Comments

  • Awesome write up and ideas!

    I have been trying to find a better way to get some good night’s rest. So much so that I have scheduled a sleep study to find out why I am always tired and yawning.

    My wife says I snore like a wild bore and I have found that nothing works to calm that down. We believe that’s one of the reason why I don’t sleep so well, because of loss of air or something to that effect.

    It makes me wonder if some of these natural remedies would help me get a peaceful nights sleep. Thank you so much for the ideas!

    • Hi Justin! Give them a try. You have absolutely nothing to lose! Try this remedy for snoring: Put 2 drops of lukewarm butter in each nostril before bed. Additionally, take 1 gals of warm water. Crush some cardamom seeds to get 1/2 tsp cardamom powder. Add it to the water. Mix well. Drink before bed.

  • You article has helpful information on how a good night sleep can make your life better. Nice tip on going to sleep at 10 PM. I used to sleep later than 10 PM to finish work loads, but ended up more exhausted the next day. I have since tried to finish everything quickly and sleep earlier, and now I feel more energized and less irritated. I hope to try all your tips such as yoga and meditation to sleep better.

  • Hello Jackie,
    Beautiful website and great post! I need to get in bed at 10:00pm, but I am so busy that I find it impossible with my busy schedule. I will keep working on trying to get to sleep starting at 10:00pm. I know that I am not the only one with this problem. You gave some great tips on getting to sleep and I will definitely use them. Thank you for sharing a wonderful article! 🙂

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