I take my sleep seriously. With a husband who works nights and a child who wakes up early, sleep can sometimes elude me. Which is too bad because if it were up to me I’d go to bed at 9 PM every night. No joke. Sleep has always been my cure for stress and exhaustion.
That’s why, above all else, the thing I feared most about becoming a parent was the sleep I would inevitably lose. And lose it I did. Even when my little C started sleeping better at night, my own insomnia kicked into high gear. I was a living zombie, even 18 months after my girl was born.
Thankfully, I have some tricks up my sleeve to help me find some peace and rest despite the stress and exhaustion of parenthood. Of course, this isn’t just for parents. I’d dare say most Americans deal with chronic stress and exhaustion. And while this little secret I’m about to share isn’t a substitute for sleep, it can help relax and calm your body.
For me it was a daily life saver.
Constructive rest for stress and exhaustion
Constructive rest is an easy practice that can help relax and rejuvenate a tired body. Constructive rest position is a neutral position for the body. It is used to to help reset your body, clear your mind, and release muscle tension. It’s perfect as a pre-bedtime ritual or as a mid-day “pick me up.” Follow these easy simple steps to help rejuvenate your body.
How to practice constructive rest and ease stress and exhaustion:
1. Lie down on your back with your knees bent and touching. Place your feet on the floor, wide enough to let your knees relax and rest against each other. Or, if you tend to deal with back pain, you may start by resting your calves on the seat of a chair as you lie on the floor.
2. Place a small towel or book under you head if needed to keep your neck in line with your spine. (A good way to measure what your body needs is to stand up straight against a wall and notice how much space is between the back of your head the the wall. Try and find something around that same thickness. You may find that you need 2 – 3 small books to get your head properly aligned).
3. Place your arms in a comfortable position: by your side or on your torso.
4. Relax your shoulders, neck, facial muscles and jaw. Picture your muscles melting into the ground, allowing the earth to fully support you. Breathe deeply.
5. Quiet your mind and rest for 2 – 20 minutes.
Make it a habit
As you let this become a daily practice you may notice that your spine feels freer, chronic tension will start to decrease and you might be more able to focus and be in the present a moment. Something anyone dealing with stress and exhaustion can use. Which is all of us, right?