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A Simple Practice For Better Sleep

By: Barbara Bussey

Every morning, the small, east-facing balcony of the apartment I live in is bathed in sunshine. As often as possible, I take advantage of enjoying my morning coffee there.

Yesterday morning, I noticed that the dense foliage surrounding the property and along the creek across the street is once again giving notice; various shades of green are transitioning into hues of orange, red, and gold. The beginning of their seasonal exit is as graceful and elegant as always. Nature makes change look easy, doesn’t it? Predictable even.

There’ve been many life moments when I’ve had to adjust when a change was required, whether anticipated or not. And I confess, it has been neither graceful nor elegant.

Taking a few minutes to appreciate my surroundings in this way was refreshing. It helped turn my thoughts toward the fullness of my life. Admittedly, when there’s a lot of moving pieces to manage, it can be too long before the idea of gratitude revisits my thoughts. This is something I’d like to change.

While the concept of “gratitude” is perhaps somewhat trendy of late, there have been trials published in reputable journals to support the positive impact that a practice of gratitude (pre-sleep positive thoughts) can have on quality and quantity of sleep.

Cultivating a habit of gratefulness throughout the day is correlated with more positive (less negative) thoughts at bedtime which in turn is associated with less time falling asleep and an increase in duration and quality of sleep.

When and where does gratitude show up in your life?

How do you feel about trading the ‘sheep count’ in for a mind map of all that you have to be and to feel grateful for?

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