Sweet Sweet Slumber

bedtime routine, insomnia, sleep -

Sweet Sweet Slumber

Are you having trouble sleeping?

We spend the majority of our life sleeping and it's a foundational pillar of health, so it's definitely an area we need to give focus.

Sleep issues present in a variety of ways and can be caused by many different things, there really isn’t a simple answer to sleep issues. Each individual really needs an individual approach. However, there are a few general suggestions I would make, along with some questions to better guide you towards discovery of possible root causes. Remember, improving sleep takes time and consistency, be patient and commit to a healthy sleep hygiene routine.


What is the cause of your insomnia? Do you lie awake for hours or do you fall asleep and then wake up often?

Are there any medical conditions? Any medications? Many pharmaceuticals have insomnia as a side effect.

Are there food intolerances or poor nutrition?

One may need to be checked for sleep apnea, review medications (antihistamines, diuretics, antipsychotics, antidepressants, decongestants, asthma medications and some blood pressure medications can cause sleeplessness and disturb REM sleep. Ask your Dr. or pharmacist if what you are taking might be interfering with sleep).

Top Tips For Bedtime Routines:

- Create a relaxing bedroom setting with a cool temperature in a dark quiet room

- Rise at the same time each morning and get to bed at the same time each night

- Fill yourself with balanced meals throughout the day, don't go to bed hungry and don't eat a large meal before bed

- Cut back on caffeine, alcohol, and tobacco 

- Don’t take any stimulating supplements after 5pm

- Move and exercise daily, at least 2 hours before bedtime

- Keep any daytime naps short

- Avoid blue light via computers, televisions and phones at least an hour before bedtime

- Start a journaling practice

Secrets of successful sleepers:

- Go to bed when tired, if you do not fall asleep after 15-20minutes, get up and do something quiet until you become drowsy,

- Leave technology and TV out of the bedroom, sleep in a very dark room, stay comfortably cool at night,

- Get up at the same time each day, if needed, use an alternative alarm clock (old school battery operated, not phone or electronic devices),

- Don’t go to sleep angry and try not to rehash the day’s problems.

- When you go to bed, mindfully relax your muscles. 

Bedtime Routines

The Circadian rhythm, Sleep/Wake cycles, may be off and need to be reset. Sync yourself with the Sun. Natural sunlight during the day can be helpful for falling and staying asleep so get outside daily, even if just for a brief walk, try for 20-30min every day.

Tips for getting ready for sleep: take a bath, make a healthy nightcap (*herbal tea, see below), use calm music, meditations, restorative yoga, practice letting go.

Meditation is very helpful and there are many apps available. I like Insight Timer, but there are plenty of others to try that have a variety of meditations to choose from. Look for a Yoga Nidra (translates to “Yogic Sleep”) guided meditation. 

A diffuser of a relaxing essential oil such as lavender or try blending in some cedarwood, as that can be more relaxing for some. 

CBD is a valuable resource to aid your circadian sleep rhythm among other body systems. Even better if you can find it paired with CBN, a cannabinoid known to aid sleep. Start with a low dose and work your way up to a target dose, consistency helps the many health benefits shine. 

Another helpful tool for sleep is melatonin, useful on a short term basis. 

Herbal Remedies

Herbal Actions that aid sleep: hypnotics (strong nervine relaxants), antispasmodics, nervine tonics, adaptogens.

Some Hypnotic herbs you may enjoy could be chamomile, lemon balm, hops, catnip, valerian, skullcap, passionflower, motherwort, california poppy….the list goes on. One of the keys to success is choosing the best herbs to aid the body systems that are out of balance causing the sleep issues.

*Herbal Teas readily available:

- Chamomile is a classic,

- Skullcap relaxes and restores the nervous system

- If the sleep issue is anxiety, pair skullcap with passionflower for even more synergy especially if you need help getting back to sleep.

- California Poppy is better if the problem is a running mind,

- Valerian or Magnolia if you tend to wake and can’t fall back asleep

 Try my Sweet Surrender tea to unwind and find uplifting relaxation. This custom blend includes both Chamomile and California Poppy along with other herbs offering stress relief and mood support. 

 I hope these tips and remedies help you fall back into a restorative sleep pattern. Feel free to reach out if you are having any difficulties. It is my goal to help everyone realign with their dream cycles and wake feeling rested and renewed.


Disclaimer - My objective is to help others achieve optimum health and vitality consistent with their own goals. Nutrition and herbs are my primary specialty and represent my area of expertise. The degree of incorporation of these systems will vary from case to case. I believe the human body has the innate ability to self-heal and can return to a harmonious balanced state when combined with nature’s herbal wisdom, whole foods and a healthy lifestyle.

I do not diagnose or directly treat disease. I do however focus on education and how you can personally enhance your own body’s innate healing capacity. I am NOT a Medical Doctor, nor do I practice western medical assessment, diagnosis or treatment. I do not claim to cure disease nor do I give advice about pharmaceuticals and medications at any time. I encourage and support any additional consultations you may wish to pursue for your health condition. I am willing to work as a part of a health care team including physicians and other health care providers. If you would like me to work with your physician, please also inform your physician of this wish. Please consult your medical care provider before using herbal medicine, particularly if you have a known medical condition.

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