Sleep Mindset

bedding

How we think about sleep will determine how much sleep we get.

Whoa!!  That’s a pretty big claim, but trust me on this.

If you want to improve your sleep, you have to start with improving our off duty sleeping.  If you want to improve your off duty sleeping, you have to first tackle your sleep mindset.

What are your thoughts about sleep?

Any of these sound familiar?

  • I’ll sleep when I’m dead
  • I don’t have time to sleep
  • There is too much going on for me to sleep today
  • Sleep is a luxury
  • Sleep is not a thing when you work this (EMS) job
  • I’m not going to pay a babysitter to watch my kids while I sleep
  • I have to _______
  • No such thing as sleep with a baby/toddler/tween/teen/young adult
  • I’m a light sleeper
  • I can’t sleep during the day
  • I can’t sleep b/c my spouse snores

Thoughts like those will prevent you from getting the sleep you need. Thoughts are very powerful obstacles!

Most of the above mentioned thoughts are just lies you tell yourself….and you just believe them to be true because you have never stopped to question the thought(s). You may even want to argue with me, that, no…it’s true…I don’t have time to sleep.

When I was really in the heart of my sleep struggles, I had sought out sleep advice from many different experts. None of which improved my sleep until I had a Life Coach explain to me how  my Thoughts create my Feelings, my Feeling will drive my Actions, and the actions I take will produce Results in my life.

 

CTFAR thought Model

I know that I don’t need to tell you how important sleep is.  Our bodies and minds need sleep to function at our highest ability.

If you have been in EMS for any amount of time, you have likely responded to a crash where someone had fallen asleep.

Lack of sleep has very negative effects on our cognitive abilities and affects our physical body as well.

If you are wanting to lose weight, you will have to get your off duty sleep dialed in!

Why is it that we know how important sleeps is yet we STILL DON’T do what needs to be done to get enough of it??

Because of how we Think about sleep.  Sleep mindset.

How we think is directly related to the life we live. Our thoughts will create our results.  If you think shitty thoughts about sleeping…guess what? You’re gonna have shitty sleep. These are not just semantics.  The words that come out of our mouths or the thoughts that stay in your head matter.

Our brains are always scanning for problems. When it finds a problem, it loves to focus on the problem. It feels important to focus on the problem.

When we focus on the problem, we stay IN the problem!! 

When we are IN the problem, we cannot FIND the SOLUTION.

Where focus goes, energy flows.

We have to learn to intentionally focus our brain on the solutions. If thoughts can be obstacles, they can also be the solution.

Focus thinking on how important your sleep is.

  • My body needs to rest and rejuvenate
  • Sleep is my number one fat burner
  • Sleep will help me feel better
  • I deserve to get quality sleep
  • I am at my best when I get adequate sleep
  • Sleep in not a luxury, it is a necessity
  • I choose to sleep now so that I may have a longer life
  • I am a good sleeper
  • I love to sleep
  • Sleep is a priority

When we re-direct our focus to the solution, we will create much different results in our life.  Our brains are good problem solvers, but only when we direct its focus.  My guess is, you have not spent a ton of time on your mindset of sleep. It’s no wonder it hasn’t improved yet.

I have tons and tons of tips and strategies on how to get better sleep, but if we don’t start from the top (brain) down, it won’t be a long term solution.

Does this really matter? Yes. It matters big time.

People want to argue with me that those obstacle thoughts are “true”.  Ok. Maybe. Maybe not.  My question is, why would you want to think them? They don’t serve you. They keep you where you are…stuck and not getting the sleep you need.

We have created the habit of always thinking about, and focusing on the negative, or the problem. It’s what feels most comfortable and familiar. But you don’t HAVE to.

Let’s put this into action. 

Grab the Free PDF Download (click the button at the end of the post) I created for you to write out your thoughts about sleep.  Dump all the thoughts out you have about sleep on these pages.  Don’t edit yourself. It does not have to read like a story, just rando sentences in your head about sleep.

Next spend some time coming up with thoughts you’d like to focus on that will improve your sleep mindset (similar to the examples I provided above!).

After setting the foundation for your sleep mindset, it will be much easier to improve sleep hygiene, and develop a pre-sleep routine!

Have you joined my All EMS Women group yet? Click HERE to join!

This is not like every other EMS group.  Women helping, supporting and encouraging all EMS women.  This industry is hard enough, we need a safe place to get support, mentorship, and friendships.  To join, just answer a few short questions and your request will be approved!  Don’t forget to invite all your lady friends.

Think well my friend.

xo.  Valerie

I can’t sleep

When you can't sleep

I’m not talking about when you’re at work and can’t sleep. ⁠

I’m talking about when you are at home, in your own bed, and you j u s t. C a n ‘ t. S l e e p! 🤬⁠

You toss and turn. You try all the things to get the F*ck to sleep and nothing works. ⁠

Finally morning arrives, and it feels like you’ve been hit by a bus. Eyes puffy from lack of sleep. You are dragging. No amount of coffee can help. All you talk about all day is how you didn’t get any sleep. You’re so tired. You’re exhausted. You need a nap. You eat a bunch of crap food to try and wake up. You can’t do anything because you are so tired. On and on.⁠

This was me for years. I mean decades. I told myself this is why I was in EMS. I can’t sleep most nights, so I might as well be up taking care of sick people! ⁠

I learned a ton about sleep and changed many of my habits. But, every once in a while, I will have a night where despite my good sleep hygiene and pre-sleep routine, I just can’t sleep.⁠

So what do you do after a sleepless night?⁠

You need a mindset upgrade. ⁠

Stop telling everyone how tired you are. No one cares. Sorry, not sorry.⁠

Stop living in the problem, it’s just going to make you more tired! 🤯⁠

Think some thoughts that will create energy instead of depleting it.⁠

Here are some of the ones I use…⁠

I have all the energy I need to get this done.⁠
I create energy with my thoughts.⁠
I can be tired AND make lunch.⁠
I can be tired AND take the dog for a walk.⁠
I can take a nap if I want to.⁠
I can listen to my body and make good choices.⁠

Was I tired all day? Yeppers. Did I do less than I normally do? Sure did. Did I beat the crap out of myself for having a slow day? Nope.⁠

Hope you sleep well tonight my friends!⁠

xo. Valerie⁠

PS.Did you hear? I’m hosting a Workshop in mid October on how to create an eating protocol {you will actually follow} for Weight Loss. It’s going to be just what you need to head in to the holiday season and not gain more weight! If you are interested, send me a DM and I’ll give you more deets. ⁠

PPS. Watch the FREE video training I made on the ABC’s of Weight Loss for EMS.   Just click the blue button below to watch the video.

Come join my communities!  

If you are a WOMEN in EMS, click HERE to join the ALL EMS WOMEN private FB Page!

Open to both Women and Men in EMS is my EMS Weight Loss & Well Being private FB Page.  To join, click HERE.

Do your Part

Are you doing your part?⁠

We like to talk about all the reasons why we “can’t” do our part when it comes to our weight loss (or life for that matter!)⁠

🔹My work schedule is too irregular⁠
🔹My kids love to eat pasta⁠
🔹I have to stay up late doing the dishes and laundry⁠
🔹I’m just too tired⁠
🔹My spouse doesn’t support me⁠
🔹It’s too expensive⁠

I used to call these excuses. ⁠

Now, I call them obstacles.⁠

When we call them excuses, we are acting like victims. Like we have no control over them.⁠

When we call them obstacles, we feel more in control. Like we can overcome them.⁠

Are you doing your part in creating ways to overcome your own obstacles?⁠

I can’t do this for you. YOU have to do YOUR part.⁠

You actually don’t need to know how…you just have to have the desire to figure it out.⁠

Get creative. Remember, losing weight is not complicated. ⁠

🔸Assess hunger/fullness⁠
🔸Begin upping your water intake⁠
🔸Commit to protecting and prioritizing your sleep⁠
🔸Decide what you will eat ahead of time⁠
🔸Exercise. No crazy work out..just move your bod.⁠

What obstacles are really getting in the way of you doing that? Do your part and overcome them!⁠

xoxo. Valerie⁠

PS. Watch the FREE video training I made on the ABC’s of Weight Loss for EMS.   Just click the blue button below to watch the video.

Come join my communities!  

If you are a WOMEN in EMS, click HERE to join the ALL EMS WOMEN private FB Page!

Open to both Women and Men in EMS is my EMS Weight Loss & Well Being private FB Page.  To join, click HERE.

Hello There…

Hello There!

Well Hello there!⁠

In case you’re new around here I wanted to take a minute and tell you a bit about me and how I got here. ⁠

I’m going to do it EMS Report style with my favorite format…VOMIT…⁠

V= Vitals…Flight Paramedic. Married. Three kids. Coach. Blogger.⁠

O= Origin..West/Central Wisconsin, originally from Minnesota⁠

M= Mechanism…married. divorced. moved. married. 3 kids in 4 years. 100# weight gain. two knee surgeries. sick all of the time. hot mess express (aka hormones).⁠

I= Interventions…hired a Life Coach, hot yoga, meditation, walking.⁠

T= Treatments…coaching, reduced sugar and flour, limited ETOH, listen to my bodies signals, mindset upgrade, stress reduction, sleep improvement, and increased water intake ⁠

The result of this HARD work? Down 50#, completely new attitude, feeling better than I have in two decades, became a Certified Life and Weight Loss Coach and started my own Coaching practice and helping other EMS professionals improve their Well Being and Lose Weight!⁠

To grab a copy of a Free Training on the ABC’s of Weight Loss for EMS, click the blue button below!

xoxo. Valerie

Come join my communities!  

If you are a WOMEN in EMS, click HERE to join the ALL EMS WOMEN private FB Page!

Open to both Women and Men  in EMS is my EMS Weight Loss & Well Being private FB Page.  To join, click HERE.

Safety Reminder!!

Safety Reminder

What are you waiting for to improve your Wellness?⁠

You will never have more time than you do right now. ⁠⏰⁠

You will never be more ready than you are right now.⁠🙋⁠

You don’t need to spend money to improve your wellness. 💰⁠

Working in EMS/HEMS will never get any easier or less stressful…trust me, I know this…I’ve been flying for 19 years!⁠

Your Wellness is up to You my friend.⁠

I’m here to help. ⁠

What can you do RIGHT NOW to improve your Wellness?⁠

💥Drink a glass of water⁠
💥Get outside and walk around⁠
💥Take 5 slow deep breaths⁠
💥Meditate for 5 min⁠

I’d love to connect with you. Send me a DM and ask me any questions. ⁠

Be safe out there! ⁠

xo. Val

PS. Watch the FREE video training I made on the ABC’s of Weight Loss for EMS.   Just click the blue button below to watch the video.

Come join my communities!  

If you are a WOMEN in EMS, click HERE to join the ALL EMS WOMEN private FB Page!

Open to both Women and Men  in EMS is my EMS Weight Loss & Well Being private FB Page.  To join, click HERE.

Stay Well EMS

Stay Well EMS

Good morning!⁠

As many of us head in to work this morning I want you to think about how you can stay well while on Duty.⁠

What would that look like for you?⁠

Are you willing to put your brain to work and figure out how to drink a few extra bottles of water today?⁠

What about deciding to only eat when you are hungry and stop when you feel satisfied…not full?⁠

How can you move you move your body while not on a call?⁠

What about when you feel the stress building up while en route to a trauma? Can you take 4 slow very deep breaths? ⁠

If you do have a bad trauma and you are feeling especially stressed when you clear the hospital (and your not driving!) pull out your phone and play a game on your phone for a few min.⁠

I know these things seem small and don’t seem like they matter, but my friends, they do. ⁠

Taking care of ourselves during this pandemic is critical.⁠

Have a safe day.⁠

xo. Val⁠

PS. Watch the FREE video training I made on the ABC’s of Weight Loss for EMS.   Just click the blue button below to watch the video.


Come join my communities!  

If you are a WOMEN in EMS, click HERE to join the ALL EMS WOMEN private FB Page!

Open to both Women and Men  in EMS is my EMS Weight Loss & Well Being private FB Page.  To join, click HERE.

Self Care is NOT Selfish

Self care is not selfish

Self Care might seem “selfish” at a time like this.⁠

But, this time….this time of COVID-19 our Self-Care is the most important thing.⁠

This can mean many different things to many different people at many different times.⁠

For me, while at work Self-Care is:⁠
*Donning and doffing PPE properly and in as much time as needed⁠
*Eating only when I’m hungry. Stopping when satisfied⁠
*Setting my alarm to drink water⁠
*Taking deep breaths when I feel myself getting stressed⁠
*Talking to my partner about thoughts that are running around in my head⁠
*Getting outside for some fresh air ⁠
*Putting my earbuds in and listening to my favorite songs⁠

At Home my Self-Care looks a little different.⁠
*Prioritizing and Protecting my Sleep⁠
*Planning my food and movement ⁠
*Writing my thoughts down in a journal⁠
*Drinking 1 gallon of water⁠
*Managing my time very intentionally⁠
*Writing in my journal⁠
*Meditating for 5-10 min per day⁠
*Taking the dog for a walk⁠
*Tech free eating⁠
*Listening to books and podcast that move me forward toward my goals⁠
*Hot bath before bed⁠
*Being real and honest with my kids in those rare, still moments⁠

I would love to hear what you do for Self-Care!⁠

Be safe out there my friends. The world needs you.⁠

xo. Valerie⁠

PS. Watch the FREE video training I made on the ABC’s of Weight Loss for EMS.   Just click the blue button below to watch the video.

Come join my communities!  

If you are a WOMEN in EMS, click HERE to join the ALL EMS WOMEN private FB Page!

Open to both Women and Men in EMS is my EMS Weight Loss & Well Being private FB Page.  To join, click HERE.

Now more than ever…

Diagram of being well in EMS

Now, more than ever we need to focus on our Wellness.

So many of us are on the front lines taking care of the ill and injured.

I’m not here to tell you how to best take care of these patients, I know you know how to do that.

I want to encourage you to take the best care of yourself during this pandemic…so that you are well.

So you can show up to work and take care of patient.

So you can come home and take care of your family.

So you can offer support to your community if needed.

But, it first starts with you.

Sleep. Make sleep a priority and protect it.

Stress. You need to reduce it. Deep breathing. Meditation. Exercise. Sleep. Humor. Music.

Eat nutritious food. Save the processed and packed stuff for the apocalypse. Only eat when you are hungry. Stop eating when you feel satisfied.

Drink more water.

Move your body. Go for a 15 min walk outside.

Manage your thoughts.

Focus on the solutions not the problems.

Be Well out there my friends.

xo. Valerie

PS. Watch the FREE video training I made on the ABC’s of Weight Loss for EMS.  Just click the blue button below to watch the video.

Come join my communities!  

If you are a WOMEN in EMS, click HERE to join the ALL EMS WOMEN private FB Page!

Open to both Women and Men  in EMS is my EMS Weight Loss & Well Being private FB Page.  To join, click HERE.

S L E E P

Ahhhh S L E E P….🥱
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I see you, 🙄 over there.
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Trust me, I’ve heard all the excuses.
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Just because you are a medic who works rotating shifts, does not mean you cant can’t get adequate sleep!
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You heard me.
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Don’t believe the lie your brain 🧠 is telling you!
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You CAN get the necessary sleep you need!
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YOU, yes…YOU need to make YOUR sleep a priority and you need to protect it.
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Why should you go to all this work to get more sleep? Besides feeling less tired and fatigued??
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Your Health & Well-Being depend on it!
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PX: high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, type 2 Diabetes, Obesity, and hormone imbalances (insulin resistance, hypothyroidism) and weight gain.
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Yep, chronic lack of sleep can cause that stuff! Looks familiar doesn’t it (the majority of our patients!!).
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It’s time to take sleep seriously.
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Just because you are in EMS (or, for my ladies out there.. Perimenopausal/menopausal) does not mean you can’t get more restorative, restful Sleep!!

Grab a copy of the ABC’s of Weight Loss for EMS free training video by clicking the blue button below.

xo. Valerie

Everyone Needs a Life Coach…here’s why * Video*

Do you need a Life Coach?

I just heard the greatest quote….“We used to think cell phones were optional, now, we can’t imagine our lives with out them.  The same goes for Life Coaching.  Everyone needs one, you need to find one that resonates with you”

EMS….we especially need a Life Coach!  

What we see and experience is not normal.  

Our Schedule is not normal.

Our Sleep is not normal.

The Problem is we believe that the cause of our suffering is the job.  

The job is not causing your suffering. 

The job is a Circumstance.  Circumstances are neutral.  Not good.  Not bad.

What causes our suffering is our Thoughts about the job.  

I help people become aware of their thoughts.  Think about their thoughts, and decide if they want to keep those thoughts.

When our job is the villain, we are the victim and we feel helpless.

If you want to feel better about your job, find a Life Coach.

Coaching is an affordable investment in your Well-Beling.  

Why wait to feel better?

xo.  Valerie-Life & Weight Loss Coach for EMS/HEMS

Wakefulness

In my previous blog, I talked a bit about sleep.

This week, it’s all about wakefulness.

Looking at the above image, where are you right now as far as wakefulness?

When we wake and sleep are controlled by neurotransmitters in our brains.  It’s a very complicated process with many factors.  Which can make it a challenge for those of us in EMS/HEMS.  If you are anything like me, you are not willing to give up this career to have a great circadian rhythm!  

With this idea of not wanting to give up the job, we have learn how to manage the physical sensation of fatigue, the emotional feelings of exhaustion, tiredness, and all the drama that goes with an irregular schedule and shift work.  This was a completely new “concept” for me to wrap my brain around when I got my first life coach.  I thought she was crazy, I mean, what in the hell “did she know” about my job.  

I have had to learn how to adapt a sleep & wake routine that fit with my HEMS life.  Once I started to figure out how to do this, my weight really started to change.  Yes, a part of my initial weight loss was due to food changes I made, but my attitude, mindset, overall wellbeing changed because of the work I did around sleeping & waking.

Here are some of the things I have learned along the way.  If you like them and want to try them, cool and if you don’t, that’s cool too.  Trust me, I won’t lose any sleep over it.  LOL.

  • Get up when the alarm goes off.  Stop hitting the snooze button for 35 min.  Either set it later to give yourself more restful sleep or really get up when it goes off.  There is a term for snooze-button-hitters…drockling.    Try this 90 min snooze hack….set two alarms.  Set one alarm for the time you must get up and the other one 90 min BEFORE that.  The theory is, that when the first alarm goes off, you shut it off and go back to sleep for 90ish min, which is enough time to allow for one final sleep cycle and you will feel less tired when you wake up, vs waking up in the middle of a sleep cycle.  
  • Planning…here I go again with all the planning chatter.  The more decisions you can make ahead of time with your pre-frontal cortex the better.  Listen, you don’t want your primitive brain running the program (aka your life).  If you want to get up in the morning and go for a walk or go work out, set out your clothes the night before.  Pack your work bag and food the night before.  Even though planning takes time, it will save you so much time on the other side and you will have to make less decisions in the moment.
  • Drink water right when you get up…even before coffee.  Dehydration causes fatigue.  Make sure you stay hydrated throughout  the day.  
  • Caffeine, but a limited amount and only during a short window.  Caffeine blocks the accumulation of adenosine, which causes sleep pressure.  If you want to get that vital restorative sleep, you can’t be chugging caffeine around the clock.    
  • Let the light in.  Sunlight stops the production of melatonin and resets the  circadian rhythm.  
  • Do some gentle stretching…don’t freak out and think I’m suggesting a full on yoga-flow…the reason why this is good is, because (you may not know this) your body is paralyzed during REM sleep.  Only your eyes move.  Fascinating, I know.
  • Get outside and get some sunlight & fresh air on your beautiful face.  Sunlight increases serotonin production, which is a mood boosting hormone!  Even a 10 min walk is beneficial.  
  • A cardio workout is also a great way to boost your energy and you will sleep better!  
  • Make your bed, I know this sounds silly, but this is something I personally worked on for an entire YEAR.  I never made my bed when I was a kid and that carried with me until my mid 40’s!  Most days I don’t feel like making the bed, but I do it anyways because I discovered that I love getting into a made bed MORE than I like not making it.  Making your bed gets you up, moving, and stretching.
  • Crank the tunes.  Pop in your AirPods and listen to up beat music.  My latest favs are Courage by P!NK, Good as Hell by Lizzo, The Git UP by Blanco Brown (my kids HATE that I listen to this song, but, it makes me want to sing and dance!), and Somewhere I Belong by LINKIN PARK.
  • Conversation is another way to shake off feeling drowsy. Nothing gets people more fired up than chatting about something they are passionate about!
  • Your mindset is also important here.  If you are constantly thinking and telling everyone around you how “tired” you are…guess what my friend?  You’re gonna feel TIRED.  And you won’t have any energy. You think this is just semantics, it’s not.  Your thoughts create how you feel. Here are a few thoughts that might get ya goin…”Today is gonna be FUN”, “I love taking care of people”, “I’m looking forward to ___ today”.

Try a few of these things out, see if they can help you wake up and be more alert. Or don’t. Totally up to you!  Again, it’s not gonna keep me up if you don’t.  😉

Talk soon!

xo.  Valerie

PS. We are nearing the end of a century.  Let’s start making this the century you lose the weight for good.  Click the button below to send me a DM on Facebook.

PPS. Are you in my closed FB group?  Come join, it will be fun! 

Catch the replay of a FB Live I did on Wakefulness!

Sleep

Sleep

According the W.H.O shift work is a probable carcinogen. 

This is serious stuff.  We have to have a paradigm shift about the importance of sleep and take it upon ourselves to make every effort to get better sleep.  It’s time to stop using our work schedule as an excuse to not get enough sleep.

15-20% of the US work force is shift workers.

Sleep in a necessity, not a commodity.

Here are some interesting things I have learned about sleep:

Lack of sleep in linked to overeating.  Ghrelin (hunger hormone) and leptin (fullness hormone) are both effected by lack of sleep.  When we are sleep deprived, our Ghrelin levels are spiked and we feel increased hunger, and leptin levels fall which leads to overeating.

Losing weight will help you sleep better.

Why do we feel sleepy?  Adenosine. Who knew!!

Adenosine is an inhibitory neurotransmitter…it is a CNS depressant and inhibits many processes related to wakefulness.  It builds throughout the day.  The longer you are awake, the more it builds and the sleepier you will become.  This high level of adenine is the cause of sleep pressure, which is what helps you fall asleep.  Once you fall asleep, the levels decrease.  Caffeine works to inhibit sleep by blocking the action of adenosine with in the brain.

Melatonin is the darkness hormone and is secreted by your pineal gland.  Sunset is generally the start of melatonin secretion, and it stops secretion at sunrise which causes you to wake up.  It is a key player in our circadian rhythm.  Melatonin decreases as we age.

Our circadian rhythms is responsible for some of the following body processes…sleep and wakefulness.  Metabolism. Core body temp.  Cortisol and melatonin levels and other hormones like growth and thyroid hormones.  Every organ and every cell in our body has it’s own unique circadian rhythm.

As shift workers we have disrupted circadian rhythms.  This negatively affects us in many ways. 

Lack of sleep prevents our brains from making new memories and we build up toxic levels of beta amyloid in our brain which is contributor to Alzheimer’s.   

Being awake for greater than 16 hours will start to show sings of mental and physiological deterioration, we are as deficient as someone who is legally intoxicated.  We need 8 hours of sleep to repair the damage of wakefulness.  

 

 

But, HOW do I sleep with this crazy work schedule?

  • Commit to making Sleep a priority.  Stop wearing your lack of sleep as a badge of honor or importance.
  • Plan.  Don’t make plans for things when you should be sleeping.  Yeah, I’m talking to you…don’t make dentist appointments for the kids when you should be sleeping.  Don’t schedule meetings for when you should be sleeping.  Stop it.  Right now.  Just like I tell clients to plan their food, plan their exercise…you gotta plan your sleep.  Make an appointment with your self to go to sleep.  Put it in your calendar.  If you happen to get rest at work on the night shift and don’t need to sleep all day then, consider it a bonus day.  Get caught up on things around the house, or whatever.  
  • Transform your bedroom to an area for sleep and sex only.  No TV, iPad, or phone.  Room darkening shades, white or pink (steady rain, wind and the heartbeat are examples) noise maker, a comfortable bed, good pillows and high quality sheets.
  • Invest in a nice dark eye mask and good ear plugs.
  • Cool rooms temp (~65 degrees F is best), a sign on your door to let everyone know you are sleeping.
  • Get your family/roommates on board and explain to them how important it is for you to get sleep.
  • Limit your caffeine.  Avoid caffeine 12-14 hours before you plan to sleep.  Even though you may be able to fall asleep shortly after you consume caffeine, it’s half life is 6 hours…and it’s 1/4 life is 12 hours so it will still be in your system when you go to sleep.  Caffeine will reduce your deep sleep by up to 20%.  Caffeine hits the mute button on adeonosine, which we need to help build sleep pressure.
  • Skip the Wine-Down, or Breakfast Bloody Mary.  Alcohol disrupts the sleep cycles.  It blocks REM sleep and shortens it as the night progress and the alcohol is metabolized.  Your brain will naturally try to make up for the lost REM sleep, resulting in you not feeling rested upon waking.  When you drink, you are taking away the benefits of sleep.
  • Exercise is a great way to improve the quality and quantity of your sleep.  As you exercise more regularly, you will sleep better and when you sleep better you will feel more energized to exercise more.  Avoid exercise 2-4 hours before bed.
  • Prep your phone for sleep. If you do have your phone in the bedroom, make sure it is in “Dark Mode” or “Night Shift” to limit the blue light. Blue light from phones will interfere with melatonin production. Even 1 hour of blue light exposure before sleep will reduce melatonin production by 50% and delay the spike of it for 3 hours.  Turn off all notifications.  Put phone in do not disturb mode.  Calls will come though from your favorites list if they call twice with in 3 min in case of an emergency.  Remember to talk to your kids/family/friends about calling twice to get a hold of you.  
  • Create a pre-sleep routine…wether you are on days or nights, this is a form of auto-suggesting and will help tell your brain and body that it is time for sleep.  It is recommended that you start this 1 hour before bedtime.

  • No devices.  The blue light disrupts the production and release of melatonin.  
  • Melatonin supplements should be taken 45-90 min before bed time. Start with low does of melatonin.  This will take time to figure out.  I like Doc Parsley’s sleep remedy or Bullet Proofs sleep remedy.  Stay away from OTC sleep aids, they induce a more sedative state and prevent restorative sleep activity. 
  • Sleep promoting herbal teas are also a nice option to try.   
  • Journal for 2 min to get the ruminating thoughts out of your head and on paper.
  • Take a hot bath.  This is beneficial b/c it will help drop your body temp by 2-3 degrees which will initiate sleep and help maintain your sleep.  
  • Guided Meditation to help you fall asleep.

Protecting and prioritizing your sleep is critical. 

Make a great effort to optimize your sleep when you can, especially when you are at home. 

The only solution to sleep deprivation and fatigue is sleep.  

I realize that some of these tips may not be useful to everyone.  Pick a few things to focus on and see what your results are.

When I coach my clients around sleep, we spend time figuring out what all of their obstacles to getting good sleep are, then come up with strategies and a pre-sleep routine that will work for them.

Creating the plan is EASY….following the plan…well, that’s what we coach on in our session! 

Now go, get some sleep!

xo.  Valerie

>PS…want to know how to work with me?  It’s easy, just click the button below to send me a direct message on FB.  Or send me an email.  I’d love to hear from you.  val@hemscoach.com

PPS..Looking for references and resources?  I have them posted in my close FB group…come join it here HERE.