“Enjoy the honey-heavy dew of slumber.
Thou hast no figures, nor no fantasies,
Which busy care draws in the brains of men;
Therefore thou sleep’st so sound. ”
This quote reflects on the beauty of sleep, especially the one that comes untroubled. To help you embrace the sweetness of sleep, which nowadays, we rarely seem to do, we've got some Ayurvedic slumber-inducing remedies. Before we begin, let's delve deeper into Ayurveda's perspective on peaceful sleep.
According to the science of life, restful sleep is one of the 3 pillars that are paramount to lead a healthy lifestyle. Without enough sleep, we deprive our body and mind of the ability to function optimally, and our 'Ojas', the life force responsible for the foundation of our immune system, become depleted.
Therefore, to ensure that your beauty sleep game is on lock, Ayurveda has some helpful nighttime rituals to help your body and mind unwind, relax, and let go before drifting off into dreamland…
Decrease Simulation, Increase Relaxation
Our mind is stimulated throughout our day, hence we must take a break from stimulants before going to bed. The best way to do so is to turn off your screens (i.e. computers, televisions, tablets, and yes, even your phone), an hour before you start winding down for bed.
Another way to relax your mind is to dim the lights in your room or light some scented candles for a soothing vibe, to help signal to the body that it is time for sleep.
Swap Caffeine With Sleep Inducing Drinks
What you eat or drink during the day impacts the quality of your sleep. Limit the intake of caffeine in the evening as its effects can last up to 6 hours. Instead, swap that afternoon coffee with a hot cuppa of turmeric milk aka golden milk to relax your mind and induce sleep. You can also sip on some herbal tea with calming, nervine sedative herbs like our Ratri Chai to soothe the nervous system while calming the body and mind. For an additional Ojas building boost, add a dollop of ghee to any of these options for a tasty, nourishing, and relaxing afternoon tea.
Breathe The Stress Out
Taking deep breaths can be very calming and helps you to enter a state of relaxation. So, choose a breathing practice that is gentle and grounding to the nervous system and try and practice it in the evening. We recommend trying Nadi Shodhana, or slow, mindful belly breaths.
You can begin by taking a long, slow, and steady breath through your nose, pause for a second, and then exhale through your nose. Make sure that your exhalation and inhalation are elongated and equal in length.
Incorporate The Ritual Of Abhyanga
The practice of Abhyanga is a traditional Ayurvedic self-massage done with warm oil. This process helps cleanse the lymphatic system, calm the nervous system and hydrate the skin.
Abhyanga helps relieve stress and nourishes your body. It is recommended to use soothing oils with calming effects and use slow, long, heavy strokes to relax your mind, body, and soul. It is recommended to perform this at least once a week to rid your body of toxins.
Although tempting, resist the urge to immediately incorporate the entire list in one go, as it might be overwhelming. After all, the goal is to help you relax and unwind, not push to do more in your day.
Our advice? Begin by choosing a couple of practices to include in your Dincharya. Once these practices become a non-negotiable part of your evening routine, then slowly weave in more. Incorporating these Ayurvedic practices will help you sleep deeper, longer, and more soundly.