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Prepare For Sleep

Everyone knows if we need help, we can call 9-1-1 and someone will answer the call. Some of us know how to push a certain button on our cell phones, or hit the home button a certain number of times and the 9-1-1 operator will ask you, "Is this an emergency?"

Have you considered that our body has a 9-1-1 operator as well and answers the call in cases of an emergency? Our bodies emergency response is called the Autonomic Nervous System (ANS). It does the same thing as a 9-1-1 operator, but ANS is asking how you want to respond to the emergency, "Do you want to run away, stay and fight, or hide in a corner with your hands over your eyes?"

Everyone feels fear, anger, frustration, and we can get a little nervous in new situations. That's normal. When we are often fearful, angry, frustrated, and nervous it's a warning sign that our ANS warning system is turned on all the time. This means chemicals intended to give you energy to run or fight are pouring into you even as you lay down to sleep. A night without restful sleep continues the problem the next day, and in no time, we've got sleep deprivation compounding our reactions and ANS pours even more chemicals into our bodies to try to find balance in our unbalanced state. Some people have been living in this chronic state or restlessness for years and the body begins to break down and disease can enter.

There are many things we can do to stop this cycle through diet, exercise, and lifestyle changes. One simple thing to change is instead of trying to force yourself to sleep is to do things during the day that will prepare you for a good night's sleep. Don't drink caffeinated drinks or eat foods with sugar. Turn off cell phones, laptops, and television 1 hour before bed, and pick up a book or magazine to read instead. Do some light stretching exercises to relax overworked muscles. Read Bible scripture (photo) that represents your concerns and sit quietly while you meditate on the wisdom of the ages.

When you prepare your mind, body, and spirt for sleep you're more likely to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.

"When you lie down, you will not be afraid;

when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet."

Proverbs 3:24


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