7 Simple tips for a blissful nights sleep

women sleeping | sleep-tips
I’m sure you’ve heard it before: sleep is incredibly important for your health. But when you’re a busy mum, getting your 7-9 hours of sleep a night can feel totally impossible! There are 1000 things to do before you go to bed, nightly interruptions from the kids, early morning jobs and endless stress running through your mind. The good news is that better sleep may be easier than you think. Little changes may be all you need to get those all-important hours of sleep. 

Why is sleep so important? 

We all know that amazing feeling after you’ve had a good night’s sleep and you wake up feeling energized and ready to take on the world. There are so many reasons why sleep is good for you. There are obvious reasons, like giving you energy, improving your concentration and generally making you feel good. 

Also, there are many things you might not think of, like helping with weight control, immunity function, inflammation, socialization, mental health and chronic diseases like diabetes and heart disease. The average adult should aim for 7-9 hours of sleep a night. 

Imagine if you could have that amazing energized feeling every day? When you’re a busy mum, chances are you’ll need a solid sleep routine or schedule to get your recommended hours. 

Sleep tips

There are some tried-and-tested tips that can make those 7-9 hours of daily sleep a lot more attainable. Take a look at my top-tips and think about which one will be easiest to start with:

  • Set a sleep routine schedule. Know what time you’re setting your alarm each day and make sure that 8 hours before that time, you’re ready for bed.
  • Watch your sugar intake. If you tend to rely on sugar hits to get you through the day, start replacing your sugary snacks with more energy-efficient snacks like nuts, yoghurt and whole foods. This is particularly important in the afternoon and evening. You don’t want a sugar-high stopping you from getting to sleep!

reduce sugar with nuts | sleep-tips

  • Stop having caffeine after 12. Caffeine can make your mind more active when it’s time to switch off. When the productive part of your day is over, give your body a rest and leave the caffeine for another time.
  • Create your own sleep ritual. One or two hours before you plan to go to bed, start by turning off your phone and TV and dimming the lights. Do relaxing activities away from screens like having a bath, reading a book or listening to calming music.
  • Use the power of essential oils to create a relaxing atmosphere. It’s also a way to begin to associate the relaxing scent with bedtime. When you smell lavender, your body will subconsciously begin to wind down. You’ll be off to sleep in no time!

reading right routine | sleep-tips

  • Try yoga nidra (sleep-based guided meditation) or another type of meditation. Yoga nidra guides your mind though simple awareness practices, while your body is in a state of utter relaxation. What better way to get your mind and body ready for sleep?

yoga nidra | sleep-tips

  • Ditch your phone alarm and use an actual alarm clock. Keeping your bright phone and charging lights out of your sleeping space will make a much more relaxing sleeping environment. Phones have their benefits, but better sleep is not one of them!

Building a bedtime routine

Trying these tips every once and a while won’t help to build better sleep long term. Like any activity, blissful sleep takes practice. Creating a routine is the easiest way to build this practice. Start by trying just one or two activities daily. You don’t want to try and change too much at once, or you’ll feel overwhelmed and stop altogether. Your mind will begin to associate the activities with relaxation, rest and sleep. Routine and practice is the key to better sleep habits. 

Waking up fresh and energized will make your life as a mum a whole lot more manageable. Doing little things to make sleep easier can be all the change you need to increase your hours of quality sleep. You’ll have more energy, be in a better mood and get more done with your day. Long term you’ll be preventing major health problems and teaching your kids a thing or two about self-care. 
Looking for support, connection and conversation? Join my Simply Happy Mums Facebook group.

If you feel like you can never stay on top of things and are always frantically trying to keep up with that never-ending to-do list, my “Unbusy Checklist” will be a lifesaver. In just a few minutes, you can map out your family’s entire routines so that you know exactly who needs to do what and when… no more nights of you falling on the couch exhausted from doing it ALL. You’ll have more time to set a bedtime routine.

Which tip do you think could work for you? Let me know in the comments!

Three Easy Steps to Help When Your Feeling Overwhelmed as a Mum

circles of wellness | feeling-overwhelmed
Rewind to five years ago and I was constantly snapping at my kids, yelling at the top of my voice for some peace and quiet, turning up to appointments on a wrong day and falling on the couch at the end of the day completely exhausted.
I was an overwhelmed mum who was unhappy and felt stuck. I’d managed to get into a cycle of measuring my self-worth and value from how much I could get done. I knew I needed to make some changes.
I started by making small and simple changes around three areas of my life so I’d feel more focused, organised and have more energy. Now I feel less overwhelmed, more productive and more present with my family. I value myself through who I’m BEING rather than what I’m DOING. There’s always space to review, tweak and improve, but improving your energy, time and attention is a good base to build from.

More Time

When my daughter was at kinder, my son was a toddler and I was teaching Physical Education part-time. I was also (somehow) on the kinder fundraising committee, secretary of the local toy library and wedding planning for our own wedding. At that time in my life, I had zero boundaries and said ‘yes’ to everything. Guess what? I took on too much. I had NO TIME. I was running myself into the ground and I felt like I was doing so much but achieving very little. After our wedding, our son was diagnosed with Perthes Disease (when the blood is temporarily disrupted to the femur and bone cells die). I started to unpack what I had on my plate, and how it was making me feel. I dropped the extra commitments and made some simple meal preparation tweaks, started to follow a washing routine and began using a shared calendar for our families activities. Through sharing the load and simplifying how we do things, I’ve created more ease for myself and our family.

command centre | feeling-overwhelmed

Feel Energised

When my son started kinder I decided to study Wellness Coaching (as well as teaching). The strenuous workload resulted in skipping lunch or just grabbing something on the go. But, guess what turned up at 3 pm? Sugar cravings. Internally, my immune system shut down and I was getting sick often. I knew it was time to change, so I started to meal prep my lunches and snacks on the weekend. I now eat a more fulfilling breakfast, healthy prepared lunch and snack on high-energy nutritious food like nuts, chia pudding and smoothies so I’m not running on empty or grabbing a sweet treat all the time.

berry smoothie | feeling-overwhelmed

Photo credit - flickr

Exercise has always been an important part of my life (I suppose that’s why I become a Physical Education teacher)! I love the boost of energy and how much easier it is to concentrate after doing exercise in the morning. Fueling up on healthy, sustaining food makes keeping up with my exercise routine so much easier and enjoyable. 

Fueling up isn’t just about good food, it’s also about that all-important sleep. Sleep has been something I’d often sacrifice for more time since I became a mum, until recently. I used to do jobs or be on the computer till late in the night. I now have a bedtime ritual that includes reading, journaling and listening to a Yoga Nidra meditation. I look forward to bedtime and sleep since starting my ritual. It makes falling asleep easier and I wake up feeling more energised.

Attention Mum!

Over a year ago our son was diagnosed with Autism. To better support him I needed to switch off and give my brain a break, so I could be more patient when holding space for him. I started to practice Yoga Nidra, a form of sleep meditation where your body rests and your mind benefits from meditation. I’m now more focused on the present moment and less anxious. I can take time off thinking about my ever-growing ‘to-do’ list and just live in the moment. 

yoga nidra class | feeling-overwhelmed

Gratitude is something we started to practice several years ago as a family. At dinner time we share our favorite parts of our day and something we’re thankful for. I’ve also started to do this in a journal either before going to sleep or first thing in the morning for myself. These simple gratitude practices have helped our children feel more connected at dinner time. There’s plenty of research that suggests this is increasing our happiness too. 

These three easy steps are designed to help you when you’re feeling overwhelmed as a mum. They’ve helped me a long way in my journey! Making small and simple tweaks to the area that you feel is out of balance will help you feel more energised, organised or focused. You’re only a few simple steps away from being a calmer, happier and more productive mum!

To be able to start a bedtime ritual or plan nutritious weekly meals or start a regular exercise routine you need space and time out from the daily juggle. The Mums’ Coaching Circle group will give you that space, support and motivation to start the things you’ve been talking about. Click HERE to learn more about the next Mums’ Coaching Circle.

Looking for support, connection and conversation? Join my Simply Happy Mums Facebook group.

Which small and simple tweak would you like to try? I’d love to hear your thoughts, or help you on your own journey like mine!