You may have noticed that I’m co-leading a Montauk Sleepscape Retreat in early May. Aaah, I love Montauk, the ocean, and my sleep!
The true reason I’m doing it is that I’m passionate about cracking the code around why quality sleep eludes so many of us. I have struggled with this myself for decades and have a first-hand understanding of the ramifications of interrupted and/or short nights.
Social activities, late meals, mindless TV, email and work all-nighters were part of my regular repertoire for decades. Even as a kid, I would sneak a flashlight and stay up late reading or playing a game. I didn’t need no stickin sleep!
However, by my 30’s digestive disorders, brain fog, lack of energy and inability to drag myself out of bed in the morning were common.
How many of the below items apply to you?
- In takes me 30 minutes or more to fall asleep.
- I am awake 30 minutes or more during the night.
- I am awake 30 minutes or more prior to my scheduled wake time or alarm.
- I am tired, fatigued or sleepy during the day.
- I sleep better if I go to bed before 9:00 pm and wake up before 5:30 am.
- I sleep better if I go to bed late (after 1:00 am) and wake up late (after 9:00 am).
- I fall asleep at inappropriate times or places.
- I have been told that I snore.
- I wake up during the night choking or gasping.
- I have been told I stop breathing when I sleep.
- I feel uncomfortable sensations in my legs, especially when sitting or lying down that are relieved by moving them.
- I have an urge to move my legs that is worse in the evenings and nights.
- I wake up frequently during the night for no reason.
- I have experienced sudden muscle weakness when laughing, joking, angry or during other intense emotions.
- I have been told that I walk, talk, eat or act strange or violent while sleeping.
- I have nightmares.
- For no reason, I awaken suddenly, startled, and feeling afraid
That was a sleep disorder check list, and you can dig into the results and gain some insight into any lurking issues here.
All sleep issues need to be taken seriously, but sleep apnea in particular is a condition warranting immediate attention.
Over the years I’ve continued to fine-tune my sleep routine, and I’m happy to report the tweaks make a significant difference. To help you do the same, for the next month leading up to the retreat I will share articles and tips to increase the quality of your zzzzs. Whether or not you join us in person, put these tools to good use by observing your own sleep hygiene habits. Through observations, note patterns (especially the surprising ones), and make adjustments.
A simple log tracking what time you went to bed and awoke, what you ate and/or drank for dinner, activities you did right before bed and whether you exercised or meditated will be enlightening. Rank your quality of sleep on a score of 1-3 (1 being great, 2 ok and 3 terrible) and note any trends.
For starters, tonight go to bed 15 minutes earlier than usual. Shut off the electronic devices, climb between the sheets, take a few deep breaths, draw yourself into a peaceful sleep and see how that works for you.
Marjorie, Chief MOJO Maker™
May 3-6 Oceanside Montauk Sleepscape Retreat. Join us!