Sleep Tight!

how to sleep well

I’m always interested in improving my sleep. And I have to say that since reading this book I have slept like a log! At the time I didn’t feel that it was telling me anything that I didn’t already know – but some of it must have seeped into my subconscious as it has made quite a difference.

It’s a quick read (which is always a bonus) as there are a few chapters that you can skip (sleeping for new borns, kids etc). There’s also a great long list of things that make no difference to how you sleep which is also worth a bit of a glance.
Totally recommend it, buy it, read it and pass it on. Who couldn’t do with an extra half an hours sleep? Let’s make the world a better place.

Yoga For Tired Eyes

Have you been burning the candle at both ends? Got a cold and can’t sleep because of a stuffed up nose? Been putting in long hours at work due to customer demands or co-workers off sick?

Left untreated, tired eyes can lead to eye strain, headaches and a build-up of tension throughout your whole body. If you are going through a stressful life issue, tired eyes can hinder your thinking, making you feel lifeless and dull. As they say, your eyes are the window to your soul so it’s wise to take heed and do something about it.  Getting enough rest is crucial – try getting a couple of early nights – whatever it takes (cancel a party, use 2 or 3 propped up pillows). Simply ‘resting’ your eyes even if you can’t sleep still helps.

There are several yogic exercises that help to relax your eyes and bring more oxygen to them. Practice one or 2 of the following exercises 2 – 5 times during your day for both instant and long term relief.

Quick note – when you practice these exercises, keep your back straight and head still, relax your shoulders, breathe steadily and just move your eyes.

  1. Open your eyes wide, look from side to side 10 times, then up and down and then diagonally 10 times.
  2. Imagine you are staring at the face of a clock. Starting at 12 o’clock, slowly move your eyes from minute to minute along the clock until you return to 12 o’clock. Rest your eyes then repeat going in anti-clockwise direction.
  3. Look straight ahead, hold your thumb up about 30 cm in front of your face and focus at your thumb nail, then focus on something in the distance. Relax and repeat 5 – 10 times. Change hands and look at the other thumb.
  4. Close your eyes and press the tips of your fingers to the outer edges of your eyes. Gently massage this area using small circular motions. Relax and repeat 3 – 5 times.
  5. Close your eyes. Rub your palms vigorously together to warm them up and get the energy circulating quicker. Cup your hands over your closed eyes for 30 – 90 seconds. Stay focused on your breath and gradually release your hands.

So next time your eyes feel tired and you know you have being over doing it, take a rest and give these eye exercises a go.

Keep Your Cool

When the weather stays hot it can give rise to hot tempers and irrational behavior. (Are you finding this in your family too???) One of the reasons is lack of sleep, when it’s hot we can find that our bedding is not really suitable for the temperature. How many of us think ‘I must get the summer duvet out tomorrow’ but never do it? Yoga teaches us that rest and sleep are vital to our lives – so make an effort… get that summer duvet out and take your time to ensure you and your loved ones get the full 8 hours – it will make tempers less hot and frayed.

Here is a quick checklist to help you get a good nights’ sleep in the heat –

– reduce the ‘togs’ on everyone’s bed (not just your own)

– take a glass of water to bed

– practice a soothing posture before bedtime (forward bend such as this would be good)

– practice the cooling breath for about 10 rounds before bedtime

– if you wake up in the night hot and bothered then you can use the equalising breath to sooth the mind and body – breathing in for a count of 5 and out for a count of 5

Happy slumbers x