Don’t Sweat It – Sleepless Nights No More

July 1, 2014

dont sweat it

The fashion industry is fast paced, tiring and constant.  24 hours is just not long enough and we often find ourselves restless and unable to wind down at night.  This week we have great tips to help you busy fashionista’s relax.

If you are a busy working professional who meets deadlines, juggles time between trade shows and fashion shows, and you think of yourself as unstoppable, chances are your brain won’t let you shut down. At some point you have to admit that from the 24 hours a day offers you, 8 of those hours should be dedicated to sleep. While that sounds great and all, it is not always easy to achieve, especially when we are overwhelmed with excitement about next season’s collections and our to-do lists continue to grow. So what are we to do at 8 AM when we have to start all over again and only got to sleep 5 hours or sometimes even 3? All the tossing and turning is not doing us any favors but that fact is sometimes we just can’t fall sleep. The day may start with lots of coffee, skipping breakfast and wearing tons of concealer, but whom are we trying to kid? We are exhausted, we feel exhausted and it’s not until the coffee kicks in that we can form complete sentences. We all have been there and done that, and we practice the very same bad habits throughout the work week.

We need to understand that the body needs to be nourished otherwise illness will follow. So what does having insomnia really feel like? Symptoms are:

  • The obvious feeling tired, but not getting sleepy
  • Falling asleep, then waking up throughout the night without being able to fall back to sleep
  • Waking up too early
  • Daytime drowsiness, fatigue, and concentration problems

What can cause us insomnia?

  • Too much coffee (more than 3 cups daily)
  • Going to bed hungry
  • Eating too much sugar
  • Being jet-lagged
  • Eating or exercising right before going to bed
  • Sleeping disorders like sleep apnea, sleep walking
  • Health problems like: allergies, asthma, pneumonia
  • Having too much television stimulation in the bedroom
  • Medicine interactions and its side effects
  • Too much excitement due to deadlines or anticipated events that are happening soon
  • Very spicy food can cause acid reflux. Burning throat feeling and chest pains can keep anyone awake

Insomnia Solutions

  • Avoid having your television in the same room as your bed. Too much stimulation can keep you awake. Bed should be for sleeping or getting frisky (if you know what I mean)
  • Try some Sleepy Time tea. Its soothing effects will help you relax and sleep like a baby.
  • Try some valerian root before going to bed. It alleviates nerves and puts you at ease. 400 mg is ideal. Taking it every other day may work great for you
  • Drink water throughout out the day and don’t leave it for late at night. Dehydration is a silent annoyance which may keep you up at night.
  • Keep you clock away from facing you at night, looking at the time wont make it go faster. Instead use a phone alarm.
  • Don’t look at your phone, if you get up in the middle of the night. This distraction is a no no.
  • Try acupuncture. It will relax you.
  • Sometimes it is stress that sneaks up on you. Switch around workout schedule and try a yoga class instead of bootcamp.
  • Try writing a daily diary with details on food, amounts of water, workouts, and mood of the day. All these details will help you understand better what triggers the insomnia and allow you to take the reigns of your sleeping patterns.

On a personal note I have worked with clients with busy lifestyles in New York City who had trouble going to bed or just didn’t want to miss their late night shows. I asked them to take a picture of themselves every morning for a week without wearing make up. Great changes were found between the nights in which the slept for 8 hours, versus the nights they slept less than 5. Try this at home and see the difference. When all else fails check with a doctor. Thyroid problems, night sweats,  and heart conditions may be other hidden reasons why your sleeping cycle is not cooperating. Listen to your body and ask for help when you need to. Don’t forget to consult with your doctor for any other sleeping aid alternatives you may want to try.

Blogger Credit

Maria TotalBodyFitMaria Andrade is a New York based Certified Holistic Health Counsellor. She graduated from The Institute of Integrative Nutrition and has been building her wellness coaching practice as well as integrating Pilates and other body healing technique. Maria’s personal nutritional philosophy is based on the concept of bio-individuality. Nutrition should be tackled according to the unique characteristics of the individual, such as ethnicity, blood type, and activity levels. She also bases her healing practice on numerous dietary theories.

Maria co-founded TotalBodyFit in 2008, in the hopes of bringing her message to a larger audience by conducting the health counselling, fitness classes, and massage therapy right in the client’s home, office or resident lounge. She leads TotalBodyFit’s nutrition workshops, corporate, and cooking events. She is available for one on one nutritional counselling.                                        

Don’t Sweat It is a weekly series to keep independent fashion designers up-to-date on how to stay stress free and healthy in their hectic, on the go lifestyles.

 If you are a health, nutritional or fitness professional interested to share your expertise with independent fashion designers please email with more information about your company.

 Nolcha Fashion Week: New York, founded by Kerry Bannigan and Arthur Mandel, is a leading award winning event held during New York Fashion Week hosting independent fashion designer runway shows.