Sleep disorders and stress seem to feed each other.

It is almost like you cannot have sleep disorders without being under stress. And to rid yourself of one you need to fix the other. Ever heard of a more typical Catch 22?

Night after night without proper sleep followed by day after day when the memory, stamina and concentration fails you over and over. Ready to give up? Don't. Give yourself some more instead. You're worth it.

Here are some suggestions I hope will alleviate if not remove your problem.

If you don't meditate regularily yet then this will be my first suggestion. Meditation calms the mind like nothing else. Sure, it takes time and you will have to forsake something else or get up earlier in the morning and go to bed a bit later too. I see it as an investment, but I don't remember thinking that before I began meditating 11 years ago. I took the time anyway and it's the best thing I have done in my life, besides raising a family.

Even though I meditate every day I can have problems with sleep disorders. One more way to calm the mind and put your body at rest is to use certain essential oils. I prefer lavender oil. Put a few drops on a handkerchief and place that beside your pillow.

Other relaxing oils are rose, ylang ylang and orange. You can add a few drops of the oil you prefer in a hot tub and soak for a while before you go to bed. Only have dimmed light on.

Which leads me to another sleep disorder tip. Make sure you get plenty of light during the day. I'm not saying look into a lamp or the sun, but sit under bright light during the day. If you suffer from lack of sleep you should get three times more light than under normal circumstances during daytime. When twilight sets in begin to turn off lamps or move into the shade successively until it's completely dark except for a dim light or a few candles. This action will help your mind and body change into a restful mode.

A few heartful laughs will release hormones that will make you feel relaxed and free from stress and worries. Babies and grown-ups fall asleep faster after a cheerful moment. Take measures for having a really fun time to prevent sleep disorders to ruin your night sleep.

If you wake up much too early and you begin to worry about an issue in your life those thoughts can prevent you from going back to sleep. You might want to try this visualization exercise.

See yourself walking down a busy city street. Lots of people rushing all around you and the traffic is heavy. Imagine all the sounds in a scenary like that. As you walk you suddenly turn in to an alley, quite narrow and long. You cannot yet see the end of it but as you walk closer the sounds of the busy street is now almost gone and you begin to see a tree and you feel a breeze from what's over there.

Now you have passed through the alley and you are standing in a completely different place. It is a place where you immediately feel serene and relaxed.

Here you should choose a set up that is right for you. It may be a mountain top overlooking a beautiful landscape or an ocean; it may be a meadow with flowers and a stream and by the stream an old tree to sit under; or it may be clear turquoise water to dive into with fish in exciting colors or dolphins wanting to play.

Go heavy on the details, those that enchant you so much your mind lets go of your thoughts of worry. Most probably you will fall back to sleep while in your dreamworld, but if you don't, at least you will have had a wonderful time while being awake.

More tips on how to chase sleep disorders out the window. One thing that most definately plays a role in how well you sleep is when and what you eat in the evening. If you eat dinner late and go to bed early you are probably still full at bedtime. That is actually good because we sleep better when we are not hungry. So if you go to bed several hours after eating chances are you will sleep lighter and perhaps wake up before morning. But what you eat matters. The digestion is a heavy process that may disturb your body's relaxation.

Some food are helping the mind and body to be relaxed and can be useful to avoid sleep disorders. The classical tip is a banana and a glass of milk. They both contain a substance reminding of the body's sleep hormone. Chocolate and sugar are supposed to make you not sleepy but a cup of hot chocolate with honey works perfect for me. Even better if I take a peanutbutter sandwich with it. I didn't make the peanutbutter part up, I read it somewhere long ago.

A bowl of soup usually works too. Not too spicy. A mild soup with broccoli or potato with broth and if you like you can add some macaroni. Slow carbohydrates will keep hunger away longer so that's a good choice.

If you wish to avoid eating in the evening then a fruit could be enough. I suggest you experiment a little but stay away from heavy food, sugars or tea, coffee or alcohol.

One last tip to help with minor sleep disorders. If you are not in the habit of taking a shower in the evening before going to bed the tip is to wash your feet right before bedtime. Rinse with a slightly cool water and if you like you can apply a foot cream afterwords. Some things in life cannot be explained. This is one of them.

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