How Can You Have Restful Sleep Despite Your Circumstances

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Sleep is the most fundamental action we can take to achieve mental awareness and balance. When we make restful rejuvenation a priority (superseding our emotions and feelings), we can better deal with life issues.

I didn’t realize individuals who experience childhood sexual abuse were at an increased risk of developing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), having trouble sleeping, or having nightmares until I was in my mid-20’s. What I knew was I loved gazing at the dark-lit sky and hearing the symphony produced by the nighttime creatures. I loved sleep, and sleep loved me. I could fall asleep anywhere and at any time.

My mother helped with setting the foundation of quality sleep. She didn’t make us take naps, and we were in bed most nights by 9 pm. And my mother was an early riser. On occasions when I would wake up to go to the bathroom, she was sound asleep in her bed. In addition, my mother would say things like:

  1. “take control of your dreams.
  2. “You are in control.”
  3. “Children need their sleep.”
  4. “Let the past be the past.”
  5. “Nip things in the bud and “don’t start nothing, won’t be nothing.”

During my 20’s and early 30’s, I kept my regular sleep habits and often had trouble staying up past 9 pm unless I was on a date. Thanks to my alignment with my circadian rhythm, I could never read or study all night during my undergraduate and graduate studies. While living in my Saint Louis apartment, I would set my alarm to 1 or 2 a.m. to watch the 4 pm Oprah show I missed, and even then, I couldn’t stay up. 

As you know, our circadian rhythm is our internal process that regulates the sleep/wake cycle. This alignment with nature is something we all have until we believe something can affect how our body is naturally wired. Unfortunately, over the past two years, I forgot about this alignment. 

  1. I took things personally (a big cause of interrupted sleep).
  2. I stressed out about things I couldn’t control and didn’t trust God. 
  3. I forgot the answers to life’s issues often come in the morning after a good night’s rest.
  4. I felt overwhelmed, unsupportive, unappreciated, and alone. In other words, I felt like a victim and attacked.
  5. I made things more than what they were. I saw problems and more problems. My imagination was getting the best of me.

Does anything above sound familiar to you?

I even thought about taking melatonin supplements, but I‘ve never been a big advocate about taking stuff my body already has. When I stopped doing the above things and others, I found my way back to peaceful rest. 

So, what helped to restore me to restful nighttime sleep? And what can help you?

  1. At one time, you didn’t have problems sleeping because of your natural built-in system. Your body releases relaxing chemicals such as melatonin and lowers other chemicals. Your body didn’t change. Your perception changed. When I changed my perception, I returned to restful sleep.
  2. Make restful sleep a priority. Everything else can wait in the morning or later. I incorporated some melatonin-producing foods for a few nights, but the more I slept, the more I wanted restful sleep.
  3. Everything you need, you will have. I remembered how all my needs are always met. So I continued to pray and meditate, retraining my mind to trust in God, nature, and myself to know the right thing to do. God did not change. I did. 
  4. You are not a victim but a student of life. I remembered my student approach to life and started speaking more positively to myself. Although my circumstances were not ideal and what I wanted, there were something to learn about myself. 

Make this lifetime great! You deserve it. Please share if you believe this post can help someone and subscribe to my quarterly empowering newsletters.

Timika 

Truth Week 2: Acknowledge Your Emotions

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Sometimes, what we need to do the most is often what we don’t want to do. Time in the “darkness” is an opportunity to acknowledge and accept our emotions and feelings instead of pushing them into an already overstuffed container. 

Before COVID-19, I, like many people, was all over the place. Here a school. There a field trip, luncheons, dancing classes for our daughter, sports activities for our son, and other events. I was not maximizing the “space” given to me to sort out years of accumulated emotions and feelings and who I wanted to be. Anger, fear, and resentment were building up in me, and I wasn’t aware of it, mostly because I was not using many of the teachings I learned as a child. 

So when Covid-19 shut down to hit, I saw it as an opportunity to “be still,” currently the third Chapter in my upcoming memoir titled Bent Not Broken. The past year reinforced that emotional cleansing is an everyday necessity for wellness. I also remembered how important self-talk is when we are going through something. 

At an early age, I experienced the power of unhealed emotions. When we don’t deal with our emotions, we increase our chances of projecting our pain on others (i.e., domestic violence, sexual abuse, and others), ourselves (self-sabotage, suicide, or others), or both. The nursing path continued to show me the mental and physical effects of pain and unmanaged stress. During my 20’s, I read more about the relationship between dis-ease and mental and physical symptoms from authors such as Eckhart Tolle, Gary Zukav, Louise Hay, and others.

The only way to achieve the balance our bodies thrive is by going through the darkness. Emotions and feelings notify us something within us needs attention. In other words, you must face your anger, guilt, resentment, shame, and other emotions to get to the other side, which is full of compassion, love, joy, and peace.

This week I will continue to shed light on how facing our emotions and feelings can show us to and through our healing path. Each bodily system works together, permitting us to make the impact we are here to make. Trauma side effects (anxiety, fatigue, heart palpitations, and others) come from a perfectly wired body, all yelling the same thing…..

The same emotions that created the darkness are the same emotions that can lighten your path. 

Thanks for reading and stay tuned!

Timika

MSN BSN RN, Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, ACE Fitness Instructor, CDCES

P.S. I would love for you to join my community of being bent on using our experiences as stepping stones to our divine purpose, healing from the inside out, and achieving and sustaining optimal health. Subscribe to @timikaschambers.com by clicking the link below.

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How You Can Regain Your Sense of Self-Worth After An Unwanted Experience

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All of us experience some form of disappointment in our lives. But how do we recover from broken expectations and prevent further damage to our self-worth? 

Here are four steps to help you remember your worth.

  1. You acknowledge the experience for what it is. You don’t need to pretty up the story or tell a different story to achieve inner peace. Many of the emotions (anger, etc.)and feelings (incompetent, etc.) we experience come from denying reality.
  2. Part ways psychologically and physically, if you can. You decide the life you want to live and set the standard for future experiences (relationships, employment, and other areas of your life).
  3. Learn from your experiences. Early on, I chose the student approach to life instead of always seeing myself as the victim. Self-empowerment comes from learning how to navigate life based on what you learn from previous experiences. 
  4. Create moments of stillness to reflect on lessons learned. Throughout my day, I take time to reflect on my experiences. Stillness is not about where you are but achieving inner peace despite where you are. Don’t get me wrong. I’m grateful for quiet moments, but sometimes I can’t wait until the kids go to bed or go outside on the deck to achieve calmness.
  5. Focus on what you learned instead of the person (teacher) who reminded you of something you already knew. What is the message out of your experience that you needed to know?

We can turn broken expectations into opportunities by not taking our experiences personally, separating our worth from experience, setting our life navigation on learning, and creating time to reflect on what we learned and not our teacher.

Thank you for reading my post!

Make this lifetime great!

Timika

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