Updated: Oct 11, 2019
I’m envious of my dog. She can sleep anywhere, anytime. She’s a professional sleeper, never seemingly bothered by a busy mind, or restlessness.
In my quest to sleep as well as her, I’m sharing four tips that work really well—cause nothing feels as reviving as a really good sleep.
If you wake up way before it’s reasonable to get out of bed
Lavender oil. I know we’ve heard this advice before, but the trick is the put the oil on the bottom of your feet. Reflexology shows that your entire body is connected through nerve endings in your feet. When you apply lavender to your feet, all the lovely relaxing effects spread through your entire body in a way that simply inhaling the oil can’t do. This special ability of lavender to relax the entire nervous system is what keeps you asleep longer. Bonus marks if you add a few drops of lavender oil to a bit of olive oil first, and then apply it to your feet. The essential oil will absorb into the skin more effectively this way rather than some of it evaporating. Please make sure to choose a pure lavender oil. You can identify this because the latin name will start with “Lavendula”. You may see “Lavadin” for sale, but I don’t like this hybrid species for topical use, as it can be a bit irritating rather than relaxing. If you are unsure, try a tiny amount on the back of your hand to see how your skin responds to it. The spiritual properties of lavender are all about breaking through the barriers of feeling burdened down by life. That messaging is so reassuring and safe that the body can more easily relax and let go of stress, and sleep longer and better.
When you just can’t fall asleep
Arnica. You may have heard about arnica for sore muscles, or its anti-inflammatory properties, but I love it to help me fall asleep. Again, you’re going to want to get this on the bottom of your feet. For those of you who like DIY here is a simple recipe for making your own arnica balm:
In a small crock pot, heat 1 cup of oil, add 1/4 cup of beeswax, and set on low to melt. You can also use a double boiler, but I prefer the cock-pot because you can set it and go do something else for the 20 or so minutes it takes for the beeswax to melt. Not so with a double boiler. We use jojoba oil for the base of all our balms, but olive oil works just fine.
After the beeswax has melted, slowly stir in a fair amount of arnica flowers. There should be enough to be just covered by the oil and wax mixture. Let this macerate (soak) for a few hours, still on low (or warm is even better if your crockpot has that setting). If you are using a double boiler make sure to keep an eye on the water levels in the pot, as it will evaporate quickly.
Remove from the heat and strain. Cheesecloth works the best for this. Simply place the cloth over a clean sealable container and pour the mixture into it. Use a large spoon to press out the remaining liquid.
Seal, and label the container. Allow it to cool before use.
If you’d like to add some lavender essential oil to the salve, I recommend doing that after you’ve strained the liquid into the container. Do not add it during the heating phase or it will simply evaporate. About 5-10 drops is plenty.
Your beautiful salve should last about a year when properly stored. Cool, dry place, in a dark coloured glass container.
If you’re looking for a little more “off the shelf” then I love the Super Salve Company’s Arnica Salve. It really does the trick, and smells heavenly (rather than medicinal).
I love arnica because it raises up your life force energy, but not in an energizing way. It feels restful and rejuvenating because its spiritual properties open your mind to dream about heaven. Yes, please. I love using arnica when I’m anxious about something happening the next day, like an important meeting, or early morning flight.
When you’re away from home and just can’t get a good night’s sleep.
Hotel beds are strange and often uncomfortable, making it difficult to get a great sleep. A simple solution that I use is to pack my own pillow case. It’s so easy to tuck into my luggage, and then simply lay it over the pillow at the hotel or wherever you’re staying. Have you even noticed that you have really bizarre dreams when you are sleeping in a hotel bed? That often happens because you are sleeping in the energy field of the person who was there before you, so you can actually have their dreams. Weird right?! No, thank you. That’s why I bring my own pillow case. I have no idea how or why this works, maybe it just the comforting smell and feel of home, but it really does the trick. You can always sprinkle some of your beautiful lavender oil on the sheets too for an extra feeling of comfort, hominess, and cleansing.
When your mind won’t shut off, and you feel wired and tired at the same time.
The conventional wisdom on this is to get up and write down everything that’s on your mind. I know this works. But are you with me? I hate getting out of a cozy bed. Instead have a bath before you go to bed. It relaxes your whole body and your mind, so it’s easier to get into bed and fall asleep before your mind gets ramped back up again. If that doesn’t do the trick, I spray our sacred room spray Soulful Smile for emotional clarity on my pillow, and I find that really quiets down any mental chatter, or subjective mind dancing. Sweet dreams!