Sleep affects everything! We need to sleep. We need to rest. And we need to Dream. Many, though, can not easily settle down to rest. Our very cool distractions tend to keep us up late into the night. I’ve spent 30 years teaching students of all ages, and lots of them stay up all night. Teens play games until 3:00 and 4:00 in the morning. Adults aren’t able to settle down to sleep. After a time our health and emotions start to pay the price.
A good nights sleep is like the reset button for all these systems:
- Growth Hormones
- Stress Hormones
- Weight (sleeping keeps weight down)
- Immune System
- Heart and Cardiovascular Health
- Eye Rest and Recovery
- Concentration and Focus
- Works our Emotional issues
- Adrenal Gland Health
- Kidney and Liver function
- Daily Rhythm and Energy
Children and Teens
When my daughter was a Preteen I did not realize that she was not sleeping, until one night I woke up to hear her typing on an old typewriter Nancy Drew style in the wee hours of the morning. Another night she woke me moving all her furniture around at 1:00 AM. Of course lots of people get their best work done at night, but often they don’t get that rest, that healthy reset they need to function. For my daughter, she started developing anxiety and school issues. When we had her tested, she had a super high IQ and she was in the 99.5 % Gifted Range, but you wouldn’t know it by her grades. Oh those talented people have to find their rhythm in order to be the most successful!
For her, as a young person, we did these things to help:
Young Person Reset –
- Develop Daily Routines and Chores
- Exercise including Sports and Walking/Parks/Swimming
- Our WiFi Shut off at 11:00 PM: No Gaming, Phone or Movies (in High School she was allowed phone)
- MELATONIN – this was the big, super help Sublingual Melatonin Peppermint – under tongue
This plan works well for all kids, younger ages and earlier bedtimes as well. Many ADD/ADHD/Gifted High IQ have brains that run overtime. They tend to need interesting, high impact input to stay focused. These days high energy VIDEO Games, Internet Shows, and APPS are used like a stimulant, sometimes addictive, to help them focus. They need help unwinding and unplugging from that stimulation. Routines, Physical Exercise, Time Limits on GAMING/TV/APPS, and Melatonin help integrate normal activity and normal sleep patterns in young bodies. My daughter now LOVES to sleep and LOVES to wake up early. She has straight A’s in her Senior Year and she’s excited about college and her future, which was not the case several years ago.
What about adults? Statistics say 1 in 3 adults do not get enough sleep for a multitude of reasons. Sometimes, it’s similar to young people in that they aren’t physically active, yet have a lot of screen time, at work or at home, computer or TV. Our bodies actually crave to be active and feel much better when we are. Other times it’s stress affecting our hormones. For myself, though I am a very positive person, I’ve faced struggles including divorce that wreaked havoc on my sleep. I’ve also found that Alcohol may make you sleepy, but disrupts can often disrupt a full night’s sleep. I had to really focus on finding ways to sleep well and be healthy.
Before I go on to the Practical Sleep Advice, let’s get Spiritual for a minute. There are aspects of life that can seem overwhelming and beyond our control. We may not know what to do next. We may have made mistakes. All these things can make us anxious and feel like life is very hard. It can keep us up at night worrying. It can make us second guess ourselves. Right now, I want to tell you that there is a Higher Power, God, who put you here for a reason. When in doubt, ask God, and pray for wisdom. What you seek, you will find. Tap into who you are too, and why you are here, and what your gifts are, and ask God to show you how to get there. Ask God to help you with problems; if He created you and this world He knows how to help you. Ask God to forgive you, and to help you forgive others or yourself if you need it. Let go of negative people and places. Focus and you and your immediate family. Don’t let anyone judge you, your life is yours to live. I find my life is more powerful, peaceful, and intentional with God in it.
ADULT SLEEP RESET –
- Daily Routines and Organization – ZEN atmosphere, Balanced Schedule
- Exercise – I prefer Planet Fitness or these videos ladies
- Less Computer/FACEBOOK/TV or sometimes more because I’m so busy a show or movie once or twice a week helps
- CoQ10 and Magnesium Supplements
- Magnesium Oil
- Lavendar Essential Oil
- Intentional Focus on Health, Sleep, and Life
To Recap, Sleep is super important but many children and adults are not getting enough. People who are very intelligent sometimes have difficulty sleeping. It helps to get have routines and a calm environment to sleep well. Computers, FACEBOOK, and TV should have a stop time, so you can wind down. Supplements such as MELATONIN, Magnesium, CoQ10, and Lavender essential oil are very helpful. Light Exercise during the day and even a couple hours before bed is also very calming for the body. With all these tips, also be sure that you feel secure with God about your life. Prayer and Meditation help brings answers to life’s troubles. SWEET DREAMS!