Most of us attribute summer fatigue to long days, late nights and too much to do. For some of us though, summer insomnia is more complicated and serious than that.
Without proper rest, we cannot be sufficiently restored and recuperated. Our bodies become vulnerable, our minds go dull, and our spirits wither. It is no way to enjoy life, or summer.
Northerners get really excited about summer; winters are so long, and dark. When daylight returns, we just want to get out, do stuff, get busy.
We plan. We prepare. June whizzes by in a frantic blitz. Then mid-July sneaks up and we realize our summer bucket-list is much longer than the days left in the season.
And therein lies one cause of summer insomnia — the belief that time is running out.
Summer, like youth, is a period of rapid growth and progress. As Nature explodes all around us, we are reminded of what is to be bountiful, beautiful and brief. This can be inspiring or depressing, depending on how we feel about “the fruits of labour” in our own life.
We may find ourselves asking: Am I in the right place, doing the right thing, with the right people? Is my own “season” passing? Have I made the most of my opportunities? Am I growing and maturing into what I want? What comes next?
During the daytime, distractions make it is easy to suppress such thoughts. But if daily life is not meeting our needs or reflecting our inner truths, our spirit goes on high alert.
In the quiet of the night, it will let us know that something essential to our being is being unheard, unsupported, repressed, or taken.
Insomnia is our body's way of saying, “Wake Up!”: It is an opportunity to assess what is not working in our life, and why. It is a call to change.
Being called to change in the summer is probably the safest time. But what are we to do when we are too tired to think clearly or take action?
To help us relax and sleep, we need minerals like magnesium and potassium. (I love to use magnesium oil)
Eating green leafy veggies, seeds, nuts, and bananas are a good start. Alcohol, drugs and some medications will leach minerals from the body, so supplements may be required.
Also, since certain health conditions prevent mineral absorption, the efficacy of our digestive and urinary systems may need to be assessed.
Natural remedies and therapies that can help include vitamins, herbs, homeopathy, acupuncture, and especially hormone therapy. Hormones are impacted by stressful thoughts because of the increase in cortisol. High cortisol increases levels of estrogen which will change the ratio of estrogen to both progesterone and testosterone and this will change metabolism and sleep patterns.
It is also important to accept and acknowledge our feelings, whatever they are. Feelings are just feelings and they will pass, but for the moment consider them important indicators. They can help us stay healthy and “on course” if we pay attention.
We can restore ourselves in other ways too.
Remember those long lost friends, Laughter and Fun? Dancing, singing, painting, sailing, bowling, fishing, cooking,… Whatever it is that reunites you with them, do it. Nothing improves the ability to sleep and heal like a little happiness (and fresh air).
This weekend is a perfect opportunity to restore your body, mind and spirit! Seek out a local music festival (like the Atlin Music Festival) or host a simple BBQ and celebrate health and happiness with your friends or neighbours.
My thought is, if you’re going to be tired anyways… why not have some fun? Fill your heart with what you love to do, renew your spirit and feel your weariness slip away.
Tag me and tell me how you've beaten it!
It Takes Guts Nutrition
Katanne Belisle RHN
Gut Health Specialist
Whitehorse, YT, CAN
What Clients Are Saying
"I was plagued by a myriad of digestive and inflammatory issues and after months of discomfort I was fortunate enough to meet Katanne. Her insight, intuition, knowledge and caring attention has made it possible for me to heal and thrive with a new understanding of the food I eat. I am now healthier, happier and have more energy than I have had in quite some time. " ~ Steve T.
"Katanne gives well balanced information versed in first hand experience and research. After seeing various health professionals over the years, doing my own research, trials and tribulations, I can (say) that this is the real deal, and that what she provides people is a holistic, realistic approach to healing oneself through food" ~ Elizabeth G.