Wedding plans keeping you up at night? We’ve teamed up with The Sleep Guru to help you banish insomnia and get some much-needed shut-eye…
“Weddings are one of the most stressful events you have to organise in your life,” says Anandi, The Sleep Guru. “During this time your sleep can be affected. Insomnia is something that almost every bride experiences and this can lead to health problems such as anxiety, depression, headaches and weight loss or gain. Here are my top tips for relaxation and getting a good night’s sleep.”
Make like a bee
A fantastic technique to try is to spend at least 10 minutes humming like a bumble bee, preferably 15 minutes. This technique is called ‘brahmaree’. It relaxes the mind and the nervous system and gets rid of negative emotions. It will also draw you inwards away from the constant train of thoughts in the mind. All you need to do is close your mouth, inhale through your nose and exhale by humming like a bumble bee.
Create the right balance
Creating balance in your day is often something that is forgotten, we just run from the morning until bedtime and often sit in front of our computer for 12 hours a day. Try getting outside in the mornings for 20 minutes, it will help regulate the production of melatonin, which is very important for sleep. You also need to dim the lights before bedtime, perhaps light a candle in the bedroom as you relax before turning the lights out completely. Use this as a kind of winding down tool.
Meditation is not about forcing your mind to be quiet; it’s about finding the gap between your thoughts. At first, your mind will be so busy remembering things, going over past conversations, the gaps will be few and far between. With regular practice, though, you will find that the gap between your thoughts becomes wider, your mind calmer.
This in turn will help you to fall asleep more easily at night and ensure you stay asleep. Your mind won’t suddenly remember it needs to go to the supermarket for milk at 3am! The beauty of meditation is also that you don’t need anything to do it. No special clothes, equipment, materials or books. You only need yourself, and half an hour.
Apart from all the physical manifestations of stress, deep breathing will calm the mind and bring you back down to earth enabling you to think more clearly and react in a more constructive way. This practice will help calm the mind when you find yourself with the mind racing and you get that feeling like you can’t breathe!
Try following these recommendations, but look for all areas of your life that have become out of balance and always look for the roots of your sleep issues rather than looking for a sleeping pill which will only mask the problem.
If you’re still having trouble, try The Practise of Sleep DVD (£14.95) and Yoga Sleep CD (£10.95), both available at www.thesleepguru.co.uk or check out more of our top tips for destressing right here.