Effective Sleep Strategies with a Touch of Mindfulness

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By Dr. Allyson Sunderman. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

"Stress stays with you and sleep is a good time to heal the body. Our body can only take so much until it's like "I'm out!" and you start to have health issues."

-Dr. Amisha Klawonn

Sleep. Just saying the word makes me imagine myself snuggled up in my comfy, cozy bed just about to fell asleep. But, then I realize it's 3p on a Monday and I only have 2 hours of work time left before I have to get the kids.

So often we are trying to be productive right up until our eyes close and then we start again as soon as they open. Laying in bed scrolling our phones, checking email as soon as the alarm goes off. That's just about the worst way you can start and end your day and I am 100% guilty of doing it.

MEET AMISHA

Dr. Amisha Klawonn is an integrative physical therapist, women's wellness + sleep coach, yoga therapist, and mother. She is all too familiar with the difficulties surrounding sleep that come with being a mom. Her personal experience with sleep led her to dive deep into the topic and she now coaches women on how to optimize their sleep.

SLEEP

Sleep is not an option. It's a requirement. There are so many processes within our bodies that require us to sleep. Have you ever gone several night on very little sleep (ahem, maybe with a new baby)? What did you notice?

When I don't get enough sleep I don't feel good and I'm just not a nice person to be honest. I can't focus, my brain is mush, my stomach is usually upset, and my body just says 'no' to everything.

Sleep is the time our body uses to process the information from that day, heal + restore tissues, and just overall rejuvenate in order to do it all over again the next day.

The problem is as we get older things like stress, anxiety, alcohol, caffeine, blue light, children, and many other things can interrupt our sleep and make us miss out on it's much needed benefits. We turn into cranky walking mombies.

Sleep affects everything from our mood, hormones, productivity, digestion, and everything in between. That's why it's so important to make sleep a priority.

Now, there are absolutely times when it is just unavoidable to miss out on a good night's sleep and that's ok. The key is not making it a habit.

MINDFULNESS

One of the absolute biggest factors affecting our sleep as moms is stress.

Stress is often a factor in most bad things that happen to our body, to be honest. It keeps us up at night, raises our blood pressure, causes anxiety, upsets our digestion, and so much more.

What's one of the easiest (yep, I promise it is) ways that you can decrease your stress? Mindfulness.

Mindfulness is "a mental state achieved by focusing one's awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one's feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations, used as a therapeutic technique." according to the Oxford Dictionary.

I used to think you could only be mindful if you meditated for 2 hours a day, but that's just not the case.

Sometimes mindfulness looks like a guided meditation for 3 minutes while you just breathe. Other times it is taking a second to acknowledge your anger when your kid draws on the couch with a sharpie (true story- happened last week). Then, instead of losing your mind- you talk to your kid, explain what they did, why it's not ok, and why they are in trouble.

Sometimes it's so easy to just lose your cool, yell, and let it all out. But, most of the time that leaves you feeling guilty and your child wondering what in the world just happened while sobbing and creating a whole other stressful situation. Been there, done that way too many times.

Meditation also doesn't have to be so boring. The are guided meditations, walking meditations, sound bath meditations, and so much more. It may take trying a few to see what fits you, but I'm telling ya it's worth it.

Check out these apps for some meditation options:

Insight Timer

Calm

Plus, check out Amisha on Social Media and her new course that is launching!

@centered_mama

10 episodes