Sleep is something that I used to think of as an inconvenience that interrupted other things I’d rather be doing. Now I view it as the wonderful medicine it is.
Several years ago, I decided to make some changes. I had a terrible habit of being late for things that I didn’t want to do. Unfortunately, work was one of those things. I found myself staying up until two or three in the morning during the week. I had to get up at 7:30am to get ready for work.
At the time, I was very unhappy at my job but changing jobs wasn’t a viable option. I also found myself staying up really late to prolong my time awake at home where I was happy and to put off the morning. Obviously that doesn’t really work out.
So, I would chronically oversleep and have to rush around to get to work on time. That did not make the situation any better. Not to mention that as the week progressed, my fatigue and unhappiness increased. This was mostly due to actual exhaustion.
Realizing that I had to change something before I became ill, I decided to tackle sleep. I don’t remember where I read it, but I read that if you do something for thirty days it becomes a habit. This is what I used as the template to change my sleeping habits.
The first thing I did was set a firm time to go to bed and stuck to it, like or not. It only took a few days for that to help because I started getting more sleep. Getting up on time was much easier when I was well rested.
After thirty days, I had a set routine for sleep. Sticking to the routine is the key to success. Now, I usually wake up before the alarm and feel well rested most of the time. My attitude toward work and in general has improved greatly just by getting enough rest.
Once the routine was established and I viewed sleep as something wonderful instead of a nuisance, I bought a new bed with a memory foam mattress. All I can say is that it was one of the best purchases I ever made.
About twenty minutes before bedtime, I start my essential oil diffuser. My favorite oil is Lavender. Before I get into bed, I put on a CD of piano music or sometimes use my sound machine to play ocean or rainforest sounds. Drifting off to sleep is a lovely experience now. Honestly, I find it funny that I now look forward to bed time.
Another thing I did was gradually adjust my sleep and wake up times so that I now get up two hours before I need to leave for work. I can’t even begin to tell you how wonderful that is. I never rush and I accomplish a lot before work.
Generally, I start the day in a very good mood because of this. I’m able to enjoy taking care of my animals in the morning without it being hurried. I also take a bubble bath before work every morning. Again, this is a wonderful way to start the day.
Obviously there are days, especially when it rains, when I stay in bed a little longer. Having so much buffer time to allow me to do that is priceless. It was worth the time it took to get onto this schedule. It wasn’t easy at first but the result is definitely worth it.
I know these things seem simple, but when you are not in a good routine, it can be really difficult to get back on track.