Next weekend on Saturday September 5th 1.00pm-3.00pm I am running a 2 hour Restorative Workshop with a theme about how to use breathing exercises to overcome insomnia and self induced worry. I’d love you all to come along and share the teachings of yoga!
As I researched the topic of insomnia, I sketched out this blog. May it help us all when our minds work the night shift!
Lack of sleep is actually a very serious issue both on a personal and societal level. When we don’t get enough sleep, we are likely to experience a variety of short-term problems, like impaired judgment, and long-term problems, such as an increased risk of suffering from health conditions like diabetes and heart disease.Yoga will benefit your sleep in many ways. The quality of your sleep will improve because of the effect yoga has on the nervous system.
“I’m an insomniac, my mind works the night shift.” Pete Wentz, Gray
Relax in these gentle yoga poses:
Yoga gets you in touch with the breath. When you slow down and stay in a pose you can feel different areas of the body that are tense and holding on from your day and gradually let that go as you sit and breathe through the pose.
” Stretching in general has a calming effect. Poses such as: 1. balasana-the pose child, 2. janusirasana, 3. swastikasana-the easy cross leg pose, 4.baddhakonasana-the cobblers pose and 5. the lying down twist, and then of course finishing 6. viprita karani-the legs up the wall pose. All of these poses can be found easily on the internet under Google images or on YouTube, if you are new to yoga and require instructions.”
“When the world is itself draped in the mantle of night, the mirror of the mind is like the sky in which thoughts twinkle like stars.” Khushwant Singh, Delhi
Second have a soothing drink that eases one into a sleepy state:
Cherry juice.Tart cherries are incredibly rich in melatonin, the hormone responsible for regulating our sleep-wake cycles, so indulging in a glass of the tart but sweet ruby red liquid every morning and night will help you drift off to dream land. In winter I suggest that you slightly heat it. In the morning pour yourself about 5-8 ounces of tart cherry juice and drink it in its entirety. At night 1 hour to half an hour before bed repeat.
“The monsters were never
under my bed.
Because the monsters
were inside my head. I fear no monsters,
for no monsters I see.
Because all this time
the monster has been me.”
― Nikita Gill
Third do this wonderfully relaxing mantra (sound meditation) called Soham:
You will find that 20 minutes of the Soham meditation to be incredibly effective and you will find that all your anxiety and agitation will diminish. The mantra is a natural mantra because it is already part of your nature. Sooooo… is the sound of inhalation, and is remembered in the mind along with that inhalation. Hummmm… is the sound of exhalation, and is remembered in the mind along with that exhalation. The Soham mantra has been called the universal mantra because of the fact that its vibration is already a part of the breath, and everybody breathes.Sooooo… is the sound of inhalation, and Hummmm… is the sound of exhalation.
Some thoughts are too angry to sleep. They lie awake all night and become obsessions.”
― Marty Rubin
Fourth and last I suggest that you listen to music that soothes the soul:
One suggestion I can make with confidence is the work of Olafur Arnalds – click of the image below to link to his work on YouTube:
And if tonight my soul may find her peace
in sleep, and sink in good oblivion,
and in the morning wake like a new-opened flower
then I have been dipped again in God, and new-created.