Bye Bye Insomnia, Hello Beauty Rest!
It’s a daily conversation at this point. Someone asks you how wedding planning is going and you say, “I have so much left to do!” and then it starts, the endless mind loop that stays on repeat even after you have laid your head down to rest for the night. If you keep this up, you are going to be yawning before the cocktail hour is over at your wedding! Girl, you need to sleep! Feeling rested will be a key component to reducing stress and enjoying your wedding day!
My 6 Favorite Tips for Getting Your Best Rest
Avoid the Alcohol – A glass of wine might make you feel relaxed, but the truth is, alcohol, while it can be effective at knocking you out, it doesn’t give you a restful sleep. Try some non-habit forming alternatives. Valerian root is both all natural and non-addictive. In addition to helping you sleep, it is also useful for calming anxiety, which can run a little high as the wedding draws closer. Other natural options include lavender essential oils, and melatonin (bonus, both of these are available at the grocery store for less than a bottle of wine! Score!).
Ditch the Caffeine – It’s a vicious cycle. Lack of sleep means you need ALL. THE. COFFEE. But coffee makes your muscles tense and keeps your mind alert, so now you are lying away wondering when sleep will come. And the cycle continues. Skip the caffeine in the weeks leading up to the wedding. If you really need it, try a decaf coffee in its place or replace your morning cup with some herbal tea. If you are getting plenty of rest, you won’t need as much caffeine to keep you going. Bonus, your skin will look great. Caffeine is dehydrating and inflammatory. If you’re aiming for glowing skin on your wedding day avoiding caffeine is the way to go! Drinking more water will not only keep you more alert, but it will also flush out toxins that are left behind from stress and caffeine.
Change your Scene – If you have laid in bed for 10 minutes or more and rest still seems like it is out of reach, change your scenery. Get up, move to the couch and read for 10 minutes. Mindless tasks like crocheting or knitting have also been proven to aid in relaxation. Whatever you do, don’t spend this time on your phone or watching TV. Sure your eyes get sleepy, but your mind will remain stimulated and that is opposite of what you are trying to do!
Write it Down – Get those thoughts down on paper. Yes, paper. Put that phone away. Studies have shown that if you are looking at your phone before you fall asleep, you are more likely to be restless and have difficulty falling asleep. Writing out your thoughts in a journal or notebook will help your brain dump the information freeing it up to rest.
Turn it Off – Speaking of phones….don’t let that little thing distract you from sleep. Put it on do not disturb and get some rest. Those notifications will wait until morning. Studies have shown you will rest better if you don’t engage with technology for at least 10 minutes prior to going to sleep. Don’t believe me? Check out this article for some brain science on the subject.
Go Stretch – Try some Yoga or any other relaxation routine that you enjoy. Stretching before bed is known to give you a more restful sleep, as it allows your muscles to relax before lying down. Try some deep breathing techniques to calm your mind and allow your body to move into a state of rest. Doctors recommend doing them for 10 minutes or more to have the most benefit.