Sleep Guru, Anandi is a qualified NLP instructor and hypnotherapist who has studied for 500 hours with her yoga guru in India. Her mission in life is to help everyone enjoy a sound night’s sleep – naturally.
You needn’t be an insomniac or suffer from anxiety to want to take measures to improve your sleeping patterns. Lack of sleep or poor quality sleep can lead to all sorts of problems, including increased blood pressure, headaches, weakened immune system, impaired memory, depression, panic attacks, weight loss or gain – and no one can escape this.
Top Sleep Myths:
- ‘Older people don’t need as much sleep.’ According to research, the average adult sleeps less than seven hours per night. Doing this on a regular basis could lead to chronic sleep deprivation. It is true that older people sometimes have trouble sleeping; this can be down to hormone changes, especially in women.
- ‘I can drink myself to sleep.’ It’s a fallacy that alcohol helps you sleep. It might send you off, but it will disrupt your REM sleep and affect your wellbeing. REM sleep is where you digest and process the events and experiences of the day, without it you will feel tired and unable to concentrate.
- ‘I can get by on just a few hours.’ During sleep your body and mind regenerates and is critical to health. Scientific studies show that 30 minutes of meditation is worth four hours of sleep – not a replacement for sleep – but to add that into your daily routine will mean you will have more peace and tranquility in your life and a way to tap into your inner wisdom.
- ‘I can catch up on my sleep on holiday.’ Sleep should be regular. Don’t leave it to holiday time to get it on track – your body will not thank you. The body has a special internal clock and rhythm called circadian rhythm. If you are always out of your natural rhythm, sleep will be adversely affected. There is no substitute for a proper sleep ritual.
During sleep we go through cycles of REM and non REM sleep. Non REM is where the body regenerates and REM sleep is where the mind regenerates. If you are not getting enough deep sleep (non REM sleep), your body will try to make it up at the expense of REM sleep meaning that your brain will simply not be functioning at its optimum. You can survive longer without food than sleep.
It may seem straightforward, but a really effective way of encouraging better sleeping patterns and quality of sleep is by sticking to a regular bedtime and waking up at the same time every day. It can take up to three months to get in to a routine and for these little tweaks to take effect, but once you start having better quality of sleep you’ll have more energy, brighter skin, better moods and improved health.