Over the course of working with hundreds of women and men going through divorce, separation, or painful breakups, there’s one thing they all have in common- sleep.
Or more accurately, the lack of sleep.
The emotional upheaval that accompanies this type of heartache wreaks havoc on your ability to emotionally slow down, and get quality sleep.
So let’s get right down to it– how you can get a better nights sleep when you’re dealing with a breakup or divorce.
1. Please, No Caffeine After 12:00 Noon.
I love a good cup of coffee, and I have one every single morning.
It’s a ritual for me in that I use a french press, freshly ground beans, and water heated to exactly 196 degrees.
But the point is I have one and only one, and by 10:00 am, I’m done drinking coffee and I’m moving on to other foods and liquids.
Your body needs time to fully process all the caffeine from your system (even if it’s just one cup)
Here’s a good thing to keep in mind: your bedtime ritual actually starts about 8-10 hours before you climb into bed.
So don’t sabotage your much-needed rest by ingesting caffeinated beverages after 12:00 noon.
2. Don’t Eat Dinner Too Late.
Wow, we’ve all been guilty of this one!
You have a crazy day, pickup some carry-out, inhale dinner at 9:00, and then crawl into bed an hour later, only to wake up at 11:30 with a raging stomach ache.
Ughh. No fun at all.
You really want to give yourself a solid three hours between your last bite and when your head hits the pillow.
For me, I have a schedule that has me up at 6:00 am and in bed by 10:00 pm.
With that, I do everything humanly possible to finish dinner no later than 7:00.
This gives me ample time to digest my meal and reduce the likelihood of an upset stomach, which of course would result in lower quality sleep.
3. Get Off The Computer.
I do my absolute best to avoid all screens after 8:00 at night. That means no cell phone and no computer.
We have so many forms of artificial light coming at us from all sorts of different devices, and it can trick the brain into not releasing the hormone that induces quality sleep.
I’ll spare you all the science, but the basics are…
Way back in the day (think before electricity) the wake/sleep cycle of humans was “set” by the sun.
The sun rose, and so did we.
And then the sun set, and our bodies started the biological process of preparing to sleep.
It’s this darkness (lack of any light, natural or artificial) that causes the brain to start secreting melatonin, the sleep hormone.
If you’re surfing the internet or hammering away on some work project, this exposure to artificial light can easily disrupt your sleep.
So give it a try. Get off the computer at least a couple hours before you hit the hay, and see how your sleep improves.
4. Try Some Aromatherapy
One of your main goals is to turn your bedroom into a sleeping sanctuary. And a big part of that will be how your bedroom smells.
Something I do that really helps is to place about 6 or 7 drops of lavender oil into a small dish on my nightstand.
Throughout the night, the oil gently dissipates into the air and helps me sleep soundly
Aromatherapy has been around for thousands of years, and has helped millions of people improve their mood and overall well-being.
5. Develop An Attitude Of Gratitude
When you’re going through a painful breakup or divorce, it’s easy to get caught up in ruminating about your ex.
What are they doing? Who are they with? Where are they at?
Crush these unproductive thoughts by developing a ritual of building a Gratitude List.
This will help you shift from these random, sleep-stealing thoughts about a person you have zero control over, to thoughts about your own life, and what you do have control over.
Step 1 – grab a fresh notebook that you’ll designate as a “Gratitude Journal”
Step 2 – list out ten things you’re grateful for
Do this every night before you go to bed, and discover how it helps you sleep better.
In essence, you’re deliberately training your brain to focus on positive emotions of gratitude, and this can help you achieve better sleep.
Good Sleep Takes Mindful Planning
Friends, when you’re walking the journey of a divorce or a bad breakup, good sleep is going to take more intentional planning and preparation than what you’re used to.
And that’s ok. It will get easier.
Start applying these 5 steps now, and I hope you wake up tomorrow morning with a renewed sense of hope and inspiration about the awesome new life you’re building!
You can do this!
So, what about you? Do you have any great tips and tricks for better sleep? If so, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below.
Change isn’t easy. If it was, everyone would be living the dream. Having a coach who takes people from where they are to where they want to be makes all the difference. Call me today to learn more.
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