You can WANT to fall asleep.
You can want it all you like.
But if your body is saturated with stress chemistry from a lifetime of doing and charging up and pushing and striving and partying and travelling and planning... sleep is not going to happen so easily.
That's because the nervous system is stuck in GO mode.
Every day I am speaking with people who are struggling to relax, can't sit still, feel anxious, can't settle themselves without Netflix, food, shopping, social media or work... and they're wildly frustrated that they CERTAINLY can't meditate because their mind is driving them crazy.
I always tell them that all of this makes sense.
When the body is running at a million miles an hour... so too, will the mind.
Your nervous system is determining your experience of life.
Whether you like it or not, when our nervous system is fried... our whole experience of life is foggy, frazzled and the signals aren't clear.
You can WANT to make healthy choices - but if the nervous system is in PANIC mode - it wants quick fuel, comfort, instant relief... so we make choices that are quick to "fix" and quick to fade. This perpetuates a constant neediness... restlessness... craving... more, more, more, now, now, now, go, go, go.
Then - our experience of life starts to feel unmanageable.
All we want is to be able to turn OFF - but... frustratingly... we're stuck in this state of ON.
Some of the people who come to me feeling desperate to find the "OFF SWITCH" in their mind, tell me that they have digestive issues, they're often getting sick, they feel run down, unmotivated, highly emotional and at the end of their tether.
This makes sense, too!
I'll explain why -
We are living with the feeling that we always need to be ON.
We believe that we need to always be DOING SOMETHING in order to be fulfilled, happy and to survive in the world we have constructed for ourselves.
Our need to be liked, our need to prove, our worth being tied up in what we have or what others think of is... our disconnection from the fact that you're ENOUGH as you are.. all of these factors have led us to believe that we can't ever turn off.
We are living in a world full of constant stimulation and noise and tasks to complete... and as a result... we are living as if we are responding to a low grade emergency - all the time.
When you're living your life as if it's a fast-paced race... running, running, running - your body moves into EMERGENCY MODE in order to get the resources it needs to be able to meet the demand... and then it gets stuck there - because what we practice, we get good at.
When we spend most of our lives using stress to get us through the day - that becomes our default setting.
Most of us in the modern world are now walking around with a condition called chronic background stress. Meaning your resting baseline or "set point" is still one of stress.
Now, stress is not a bad thing. Getting stressed is necessary when there's an emergency.
The problem is STAYING stressed; when the emergency never goes away.
That's when the body begins to break down.
The mind begins to flat line or spiral.
It is unsustainable...
Our digestive, reproductive and immune systems are the first things to get kicked around when we're stressed.
Digesting this morning's breakfast, fighting against pathogens or making babies & having sexy time isn't a priority when we're running from a lion! All the body cares about is making it through the next few minutes!
Plus - when we're running for our lives, we're not our most compassionate, generous and patient selves either.
The issue for us modern day humans is that we're living our lives as if we are Usain Bolt... dialled up on high... but unlike professional athletes who schedule rest days and have intentional recovery programs... our nervous systems are not being given that same level of adequate rest and recovery time.
The running from the lion, never stops.
We're taking on more stress than we are offsetting each day... and a huge reason for that is our dysfunctional relationship with sleep.
When your body is flooded with stress chemistry, you won't be able to fall asleep.
When you can't sleep - the body doesn't have time to repair itself and get rid of all the acidity that stress chemistry builds up in the body.
It also doesn't have time to replenish and get more fuel to meet the demands of the next day.
That means in order to meet the next day's demands... you're having to pull from your emergency reserves of energy.
In order to get those emergency reserves, the body needs to mount a stress response!
So it becomes an endless cycle... stress, stress and more stress.
That's also why people who are stressed are struggling to meditate using mindfulness style techniques... because their body is just too charged up - which means that the mind won't settle.
Vedic Meditation doesn't require any thinking... it simply turns off the stress response so the mind can naturally settle.
That's why Vedic Meditation is the go-to meditation for sleep and other stress related issues.
Vedic Meditation turns the stress response OFF and brings the body into a state of rest that is 2-5 times deeper than sleep.
This removes the stress chemistry from the day so that when it's time to go to sleep, the body can drift off easily.
BUT - it also chips away at the build up of stress from the past - allowing the body to come back to balance and rewrite itself so that you have more space in the cup and more capacity to meet life's demands. My colleague who I studied alongside in Bali, decided to become trained as a teacher of Vedic Meditation because this technique was the only thing that freed her from years of debilitating insomnia. Even if you come to learn to meditate to improve your sleep, by removing stress from the body you will experience a broad range of benefits. You don't need to walk around feeling frazzled and exhausted anymore. There are a few ways you can work with me -
Body and Mind Alignment Course - we will look into your relationship with thoughts, your emotional world, burnout recovery, beginner and advanced breathing techniques, focus, judgement and nervous system regulation and reframes for acute moments of stress.
All of my programs are for people who consider themselves beginners and are very new to this work... as well as others who have already journeyed deeply into the world of self-development.
1:1 mentoring - Move your mindset into a place of empowerment, capability and independence. Get clear on what is causing you chaos and gain new perspectives to move forward with confidence, grace, trust in yourself and feeling aligned with your purpose.
Get in touch - email@example.com and we can set up your course at a time that suits. Here's to you and your heroic journey.