I have been meaning to do this post for a while. Since Jamie and me both are people who get extremely anxious, and have both either in the past/now are on medication to help with sleep issues, we thought this might be beneficial for people who might suffer from some of the same issues.

My experience with sleeping pills and medication aimed to aid sleeping has been quite bad. I found that most drugs to help you sleep I used had tricky side effects, a lot of sleeping drugs effect your hormones, your mental state, and many other things in your body which to put it honestly are just not wanted by me. Although I know many people have good experiences on sleeping pills and I fully understand the benefits for some people it just didn't work out for me. They made me more stressed, emotional, and gave me terrible nightmares. From then on I decided to try some more natural ways, along with little tips and tricks to help me sleep. To me I found them much more beneficial than any drug was. So lets get into it...

Sticking to a Routine/ Go to Bed Early

Sticking to a Routine and getting into bed early is something Jamie and me struggle with greatly, but when we finally have gotten into the routine it has helped us SO much. Going to bed at a reasonable time {10-11ish} and waking up at a similar time each day helps to set your body's internal clock, and allows you to drift off to sleep more smoothly. I feel a big part of this is the waking up earlier, as it allows you to be substantially more productive, which ultimately makes you feel better about yourself and soothes anxiety, whilst also allowing your body to become naturally tired.

Me Time

Taking Care of yourself is hugely important and making yourself feel nice before bed is vital to a good nights sleep. For me making myself feel nice and feeling clean before bed is vital to me. If I feel dirty and unclean my sleep tends not to be that good. I tend to make sure that my bedroom is really clean also, to ensure I feel as comfy and relaxed as possible. Any 'me' time cannot begin without a clean settled environment. At least, if you're anything like us.

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

keep all bedtime products in one location to make things 100x easier

Making sure I take the time to clean my skin of all the days impurities, and getting out all of your lovely little products then putting them away gives this strange sense of soothing satisfaction. Again, this is about you, not anyone else. And heck, if you're just wiped out and not in the mood, then getting directly into bed is the answer. Don't feel bad for not cleansing.

Having a hot drink before bed also helps, whether it be something sweet such as a hot chocolate or something herbal my favourite is the TAZO Nighttime tea. Nighttime teas are great to go for if you are new to herbal teas, they often incorporate lots of soothing herb infusions which are perfect before bed. People might argue the sugar from hot chocolate is bad before bed, but truthfully, has anyone really had some horrendous experience following a late night hot chocolate? I think not.

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

gold vegan hot chocolates represent their higher status in the world

Power Down and Black Out

This is probably a pretty well-known fact that blue lights disrupt sleep patterns. Avoid scrolling through your phone before bed, social media really isn't important enough to jeopardise your sleep. Blue lights are scientifically proven to make your brain more active so before bed they really aren't a good idea, along with also getting your mind thinking about the trivial and totally unimportant things in life.

Also making sure the bedroom is free of all light, purchasing black out blinds and making sure the room is truly black will really help your brain to shut off so you can get some good old beauty sleep. Though, we do not object to watching something cozy after you've done all of this. A movie, tv show or documentary can really help your mind get away from all the stresses of life, and Jamie can't settle without watching something.

Light Candles and/or Incense

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

For us, this is a priority, but for it to work effectively you have to light them an hour or two before you get into bed, so that they can beautifully fill the room . For us these are effective in two ways: firstly, they create a cozy atmosphere, going into a bedroom with flickering candles and dim lighting is automatically going to make you feel relaxed and at ease, whilst also playing into another of our senses, smells. Nice scents are incredibly therapeutic.

Also, the smell of the candle or incense is important. We often burn scents which have relaxing qualities, such as ones which incorporate Lavender {calming} or Jamie's favourite Patchouli which has a lot of medicinal qualities such as being an antidepressant. We often mix our Incense with a candle which complements it, such as Vanilla or Sweet Tobacco. This just creates a perfect bedroom atmosphere, so whatever stress or anxiety you are feeling can be relieved by these cute little touches.

Use Pillow Sprays

Processed with VSCO with f2 preset

So this corresponds with the ideas of smells, but let's get this straight, I don't exactly use a branded 'pillow spray' but spraying your pillows and your bed with a scent which you like, or one with lavender or other calming essential oils can be extremely effective. Plus, a good essential oil will linger on fabric for longer than the smell of incense or candles, and so it will soothe you continuously throughout the evening. Branded pillow sprays are stupidly overpriced, but are easy and cheap to make your own {Jamie and I are working on sharing a homemade one if that might interest you guys?} Again this is a minuscule step but it could make all the difference.

So there you have it, our top tips for having a better, cozier nights sleep. Of course, there are thousands of other things you can do to optimise your sleep but for us these simple and easy tricks do us just fine.

*you can find more content like this on my blog alittlefiesta.com*

Vegan Love,

Madeleine xo

Published by Madeleine Woodley