Tired of Insomnia? How to Sleep Better with Lana Tomkinson
June 2, 2021 - Episode #68 - Tired of Insomnia? How to Sleep Better with Lana Tomkinson
Insomnia affects 1 in 4 women in the US. You are all too familiar with insomnia ...the inability to fall asleep OR stay asleep. And if you happen to struggle with depression and or anxiety, you are more likely to struggle with insomnia. And I don’t have to tell you this, but insomnia is more likely to affect women than men. The Healthy Harmony podcast is all about women’s struggles and women’s health. That is why we have got to be talking about these things. That stat…1 in 4. I disagree. In my experience, coaching women on a daily basis. I would say 3 out of 4 women experience insomnia and it affects everything. Your mood, your food cravings, your immune system and yes, even your ability to lose weight. Hot topic? You better believe it. That is why I wanted you to hear from a sleep expert today on the Healthy Harmony podcast.
Our guest, Lana Tomkinson, is based out of New Zealand. She is the founder of The Sleep Well Clinic for Women. Lana lived with insomnia, anxiety, depression and chronic disease. She learned how to beat them ALL and sleep well. She has a program to help women overcome insomnia for good and live a happier and healthier life. If you struggle with sleep, you do not want to miss this podcast!
By the way, if you know you need some help, but the thought of getting that help makes you a bit queasy; I want you to do something. I want you to go to the COACHING PAGE. There you have the option of booking a 15 min call to discover if health coaching is a good fit for you. I look forward to speaking with you.
Here are the important links you need...........
- Free ebook from Lana Tomkinson - 5 Ways to Overcome Insomnia https://www.thesleepwellclinicforwomen.com/opt-in
- FB group of incredible women just like you! Functional Medicine for Weight Loss - Body, Mind, Soul Wellness for Women https://bit.ly/FMwomenswellness
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June 2, 2021 - Episode #68 - Tired of Insomnia? How to Sleep Better with Lana Tomkinson
Insomnia affects one in four women in the U S… insomnia that inability to fall asleep or stay asleep, it's exhausting that wired and tired failing. And by the way, if you happen to struggle with depression and or anxiety, you're more likely to struggle with insomnia. And I don't have to tell you this, but insomnia is more likely to affect women than men. And the Healthy Harmony podcast is all about women's struggles and women's health. That is why we've got to be talking about these things. That stat one in four, I disagree. In my experience, coaching women on a daily basis, I would say three out of four women experience insomnia, and it affects everything. Your mood, your food cravings, your immune system, and yes, even your ability to lose weight, high topic. You better believe it. That is why I wanted you to hear from a sleep expert today on the Healthy Harmony podcast.
Hey there, welcome to the Healthy Harmony podcast. I'm Jennifer Pickett, your host, your health coach, your friend. If you're ready to tap into the healthiest version of you, that you can live life with confidence and intentional harmony. Then my friend you're in the right place as a Dietitian turned Functional Medicine Health Coach. I'm here to walk beside you and show you how to take control of your complete health body, mind, and soul. I want you to live a life. You not only love, but a life where you're truly thriving. This podcast is real. Talk about real life, simple, realistic strategies that will leave you feeling empowered. As we dive into physical health, mental, emotional health, and spiritual health, it has addressing these areas equals intentional harmony, AKA happiness, fulfillment, and confidence. Let’s do this.
You know, you need some help, but the thought of getting that help makes you a bit queasy.
I want you to do something. I want you to go to inspirehealthyharmony.com and click on the coaching tab. There you will have the option of booking a 15 minute call to discover if health coaching is a good fit for you. I look forward to speaking with you.
Let me introduce to you our guest for today. She is a sleep expert. Lana is based out of New Zealand. She is the founder of the sleep well clinic for women. She lived with insomnia, anxiety, depression, and chronic disease for many, many years. And she learned how to beat them all and sleep well. She has a program to help women overcome insomnia for good and live a happier and healthier life.
This is such a hot topic today. I talk to women every single day about sleep. And today you get to hear from a sleep expert. Please welcome Lana Tomkinson to the healthy harmony podcast. Thank you for being here.
Thank you Jennifer for having me. It's such a privilege, bang, and talking to your women because I know when you restore your health sleep, one of the pillars of our health. So it's excited, always talking about sleep. Yes, yes. It says it's such a good topic and it's then I think we just have underestimated the power asleep.
So you're a sleep coach. And I'm curious, kind of what brought you to be a sleep coach. Like there has to be some kind of struggle here. So I want to hear your story. Yes, for sure. Yeah. You're right. Hit, struggled with my sleep before years ago for quite a number of years, quite often as women we've when we have younger children, we just become who I sleep with.
And then the life gets in the way, in terms of precious of life. We are busy working and not prioritizing sleep and stress, and we're just not paying attention as we go. And, and quite often also paid enough stinky allowing ourselves my be why too much. The combination of everything kind of led to me led to three a year that I really struggled with sleep and got to the point. And I thought I found myself in a very dark place with my thoughts and having only two, three hours of sleep for weeks and weeks. So nothing really wrong Hale. What did I do? I did go like to see my doctor sleep medication, try different sleep supplements, work in your little bit. And then again, back into the poor sleep, then I kind of thought I have to dig deeper something going on.
And then I'm going to start looking a bit cognitive behavioral therapy and look at my lifestyle. And it was a lot of stress with work and not, and not allowing myself to relax. And then I kind of started slowly making some changes. And my thinking was one of the biggest thing. Quite often, we aware of our emotions, but we don't think that behind our emotion, the thoughts that bring out emotion started working on my thinking. And within a month I started seeing such incredible results with my sleep, that I will go to sleep and sleep through the night and we don't need any medication, anything. The third was amazing. And then when I, what actually made me what I, why I made the decision to become a step coach, I saw some of my friends struggling with my sleep and other women share like a Toronto 35 40, and so many women struggling with sleep.
That's not right. That shouldn't be like that. And going from one sleep medication to another and nothing seems helping. That's kind of what made me think, okay, I know what to do. And now I'll get some training, a good, my sleep coaching training, and I've got also nursing background. So we've been trained to the nurse in teaching. So I was like everything, what they need to teach others and help others. So that's what made me become a Sleep Coach. I love it.
And you know, I really like how you used your struggle and, you know, as you described your struggle, I think that so many women listening to us today are saying, I understand where she's coming from. That's me not only sleeping two to three hours, you know, every single night and being absolutely exhausted. And then that feeling of frustration when we go to the doctor and we're looking for help or desperate for help, and all they do is put us on medication.
So I think that your story really, really will resonate with a lot of our listeners today because I even knew it was just a, such a scary moment because I wanted to see the doctor and she prescribed me next stage. We'll be seeing your psychiatrist. I said, how did that end up being here? I've always been a healthy, healthy woman without didn't have any big crowds with any trauma use it, but yeah, that's kind of, we can end up being there if we had not taking those steps being proactive without health and sleep. Yup. Yes. And that's the best for being proactive. And I went through I would say for most of my adult life sleep was extremely difficult. And so I too went through that period of life where I talked to my doctor about it, the doctor prescribed sleep, I was taking those.
And it wasn't until the doctor prescribed the same sleep medication for my husband that we said, huh, we need to, we need to research this when we researched it. That's when we got scared. And we think we can not both take this. Like we've got young kids at home, like this is awful, but then I'm still stuck. And I didn't take that, but I started becoming dependent on the, over the counter sleep medications and that's a trap. So each and each night I would take those each morning. It would take me for ever to wake up and a lot of caffeine that was such a trap. That's why your story really draws me in. I love how you use your struggle and you decided to help your friends and you got some specific training to do that. So now that you've overcome that struggle, now that you are sleeping, I want you, will you please cover for us?
What are the benefits of good sleep? What happens in our body when we're getting that good, deep restorative sleep? I think one of the main thing for me that our brains get rescued too bright, kind of when you go into deep sleep, all the toxins that in our brain, they get we get rid of all the toxins and our brand is so much refreshed for the next day. Why did quite often happens when we don't sleep? Well, we are more prone to stress anxiety because our brain is just not coping the next of a load of stress factors. And there all the chemical stuff that is happening in our brains, and we're more productive, we're more focused. We can achieve so much in a very little space of time. Quite often, women come to me and say, oh, it seems like the whole day trying to do one thing.
And it just so hard because first of all, you put very little energy to do something and you're not focusing. That's why you're not productive. You can't book achieve something very quickly. And even having that feeling of being sleepy, who likes that kind of a, you are not fully aware of being present when you have a good restorative sleep and you a relationship so much better when I'm kind of an women say to me, I'm so grumpy when I am tired. I snap at my children. I can't listen to that saying as my spouse, my husband I am only thinking if only I can get some sleep. And also it overall happiness in your health quite often also women say they notice if they don't sleep very well for a while, they get colds and flus very quickly.
Your body, your immune system is not as strong when you have restorative sleep. So quite often, yeah, that's one of the things they noticed. You can get a code quickly, then take so much longer to recover if you're don't get sleep. So sleep is important for everything. It really is. It really is. I hear you. And, you know, I think the main thing as women, we're busy, busy, stressed out over often overwhelmed women. And we have a lot on us. So you use that word productive. And I think that word will really resonate because that's what we're looking for. Like, we have a lot to do. We need to be productive and we want to feel good because we realize when we don't feel good, we're not enjoying life. And so everything you said, there's health benefits. And I just want to emphasize some of those, you know, the, the brain benefits and how it's really doing a detoxification process in the brain.
But also when we get good sleep, we're decreasing our levels of inflammation. And that's so important because it's a major driver of disease. Right? Well, I when we'll get to the next question, that was one of the reasons I got then auto immune disease. So it doesn't happen very often, but you can, because of inflammation does rise yep. Of insomnia. Okay. So tell us about that. You suffered through insomnia and you're saying that that was one of the leading factors to the development of autoimmune disease. Right. But they're also big before Jamian I started having anxiety and panic attacks and stuff. Well, I never had that before and it was different in session. I said, what's going on? And then obviously, because of lack of sleep for longer time led to anxiety, panic attacks and depression that I had to go on.
For six months while I was storing everything, my health for six months, I had to go on the antidepressant while I was working out. They were saying how to get my health back and know how to deal with anxiety and depression. So, and then later much later I developed auto-immune and I, yeah, I can see it, that it's all connected. You can from that point, you kind of think, oh, you just don't sleep. But then, because when you have kind of chronic insomnia for awhile, it can lead to other health issues. And it doesn't scare anyone because for, but it can be an insomnia can be the reason for too immune Tuesday. So yes, that's why important. If we're saying yeah, with your health and agree more, and it really is it's one of the cornerstones, it's one of the pillars of health, but again, as busy, stressed out, overwhelmed women, we often we kind of have we've underestimated the importance of sleep.
We kind of take that for granted because we're trying to be productive. So we're trying to stay up late at night and get a lot done and wake up early and get everything done. And we're in this go, go, go, go, go mode. And our body is literally falling apart and I'm like, you I've certainly seen what happens. I still see it. And my family can tell you, wait a minute, mom's not getting enough sleep because I'm short tempered, I'm lacking patience. Like it's not a pretty picture over here when I don't get good sleep. So it's just so important, not just to how we feel, but how our body functions and how productive we can be. And we want to enjoy life. I've also seen from a nutrition standpoint, it is pivotal because it dramatically affects the choices that you make the next day.
If you don't sleep, you're more hungry. Yeah. Well, a whole months that are responsible for hunger or they are messed up as well when we don't sleep. So instead of kind of glucose level, we feel hunger when yeah. And for the wrong things, for the wrong food, the food, the kind of processed food then high in sugar that we feel like more those kind of foods when we're sleep deprived. Yep. That's for sure. Exactly.
So the question is why do so many women struggle with getting good sleep? Why is that?
I think the biggest thing is probably they don't prioritize. They don't think they see the benefit. Don't put the connection with everything. Well, the thing it's okay. I can get through with the little slip and maybe it's okay for one night in its life. And now I can understand maybe one night or so, if you need some deadline was work or you some act event for next day or something.
Okay. But if it's consistently happening, you're just sleep deprived. But only if you only understand I've got so much to the next day, but if I go give yourself enough rest tonight and have a good night's sleep, I can do much more tomorrow. And I'll be more predictable, happier person to be around. Even if you do think, yeah, you might miss a bed, you wouldn't be able to achieve tonight something because if you go heavier yourself, give yourself some break, rest, relax the evening and have a good night's sleep. But next day will be much better for you if you do that. You're so right.
So girls listen up, we're giving you the secret to being productive the next day. If you want to get more done and feel good while you're doing it, you got to get good sleep. And you know, I see this a lot.
I've certainly seen it in my own health struggles, not making sleep a priority. And I had to get honest with myself and I had to really start reviewing, okay, what is interfering with my sleep? What are my obstacles here? What's interfering with my sleep. And so once I identified that it was easier to implement some changes so that I could get good sleep nail. It's very addictive, right? It's like, okay, I don't want to go back to feeling how I felt before getting good sleep and feeling empowered and energized. The next day is man. That's the best feeling in the whole wide world. That's what kind of women that I work with is, oh, if only I can get my sleep back, feeling normal and happy and not thinking about that. Yep. They realize one to get to the stage of being chipped in insomnia.
You crave this delete. It takes hard. I think I like to what you pointed in. It's very important stage that being aware, self aware, what triggers your a bad night's sleep. Maybe you have a big meal later in the evening and you stayed at work and you kept you awake at night or maybe we'll have kind of unpleasant conversation or what's your spouse and you all were kind of a bit stressed out going to be then sleep. We just reflect everything what's going on in your life. That's what I really love about sleep because everything has to be in harmony to get a good night's sleep. Yep. Everything needs to be in harmony.
So give us some simple suggestions to make, sleep a priority. What are some basics that we need to make sure we're getting?
All right. It's probably being aware that the evening when we get to the point of, okay, what time do we need?
Maybe from nine o'clock, 8:30, we're just in the house getting in the mud, getting ready for the evening. Maybe turning everyone, talking in a softer voice. It, whereas if you all got kids, we don't run around. We kind of getting ready for the night. We've done all this, get the bags ready for the next day. And they were saying, we just time maybe just to sit down and talk or play a game quiet. And for you, the woman herself, maybe having time, okay, I'll read a bit relaxed that I don't have to do all this that I think I still need to be done. Maybe I'll just have a piece of paper and write them down that you afraid that you won't forget and you wouldn't do them today. That way I thinking you're running around kind of finishing all those jobs, kind of have paper around the house and pin that you can write down if either your shopping list or it's your job that needs to be done.
All the people you need to contact next day emails or something like that, and then have a shower it's really, sometimes women, even, they don't have a shower. You just put in that mode, that transition that you're ready for feed. And then after that, yeah, maybe read a book or, and try not to have devices. I would recommend not having devices in your room for at least an hour before you go to sleep, probably watching TV, something. It's fine. But if it's too stimulated, if you had been watching three LA and new, you know, that it wouldn't help you, maybe don't stay around there, go and do something else. But living all those active jobs that we requires, physical work or too much thinking stimulation, public living for the next day, you think, oh, I needed it. But yeah, quite often I say, if no one dies down tonight, yeah.
We'll leave it for tomorrow. My teenage son knows now not to come like late after nine o'clock public diabete, Jerome with a thing that he needs to do for the next day. He could, it can wait until then.
Yes, yes. It can wait. And I've often used that strategy of doing, I'll call it a brain dump. If there's, if there's a lot, that's kind of rattling around in my brain, I'll do a brain dump and I'll do it in a room outside of my bedroom. I'll just write everything down or I'll do my to-do list for the next day. And that way, when I go in my room, like I'm wanting to send signals to my body. Hey, it's time to relax. It's time to unwind. It is time to go to sleep. And so I love how you described just some simple tips here so that we can train our body and get set into some sort of rhythm and routine so that our body goes, oh, okay. I know what she wants me to do. And I think, you know, as we talked about what women struggle with, we don't make sleep a priority and we're not giving ourselves a chance to wind down and relax. We go from one extreme to another, we're going and doing and thinking about everything for the next day when we're stressed out and overwhelmed. And then we hop in bed and we're like, okay, get asleep. What in your mind, how do you want me to sleep? I can't.
Yeah. And I liked what you said about brain down. I usually do recommend kind of doing a daytime. And if it is, you still have good things in the evening when I read some emotional things that you haven't solved, or as you said lists for something that you need to do for the next day, just try and do an it data. And whenever you still got in the evening best you're doing outside of your big drum, not taking those things. And quite often, if you're still in bed and you're thinking about those things, maybe have some pen and paper and write them down, but remind yourself, I thought about it today and know what I'm going to do tomorrow. Now it's time to sleep. So instead of reassuring yourself, your brain, that we know what we're a happy, we know what to do about that.
And then it's much easier for the brain to switch off most definitely most definitely. And that's what we want to do. You know, we talk about the importance of that bedtime routine simply to send signals to the body. It's time to relax and rewind, unwind and go to bed. And we just haven't made that a priority. It, you know, we did, we do that when our kids are little, you've got to have a bedtime routine. We want those babies to sleep. We need to do that for ourselves as women. And that's, you know, like you said, talking and softer voices, which I can just hear my kids laughing at me as, as I say that because I'm not known to be quiet. And then turning down the lights and, you know, taking a relaxing shower or an Epsom salt bath and doing some reading, you know, even diffusing essential oils or anything to help send signals to the body, Hey, it's time. And giving ourselves a time to transition from the busy, hectic day to sleep, realizing that we need that sleep to reset and restore. So I'm so sad, but our, our time is almost but I would love if you would just give a word of encouragement to, to all of our listeners as we close today.
Oh, we just as we mentioned, sleep, prioritize and stipend very important. And it's in everything actually in our life looking at your nutrition, your hydration and everything, it just pays back when we no sharp body when we if I'm to rest and to sleep because there's also incredible. And very quickly we can see some really good results the way we start feeling our health is improving. We can reverse back when we pay attention to those signs and stop and do something about that. So it's never late to kind of restore health. Do we need to do get to the stage when he get the autoimmune disease? It's yeah, I'm so glad being on the other side, I'm learning so much about what to do and helping other sites they relate and just taking care of yourself.
I think that sets beautiful words to end on. It's never too late to restore your health. And that is so true. And even just a few steps in the right direction can make all the difference in the world. I know you have a little gift for our listeners and download. So can you tell us how to find you and where they can receive that download? So I did send you the email, you, if you want, you can attach today's podcast, but if you want to find me at the sleep well clinic for women and I work with women one-to-one, and also I am is looking to launch the program where the women can do actually themselves, but get a little bit of support with me or they get one to one support for the whole month.
Quite often, I should say the women probably that you maybe need a little bit of help, but quite often I work with women. Who've been struggling with insomnia for a while and far more deeper issues to tackle them, just prototype and sleep. Quite often, women can be over obsessed with sleep and that kind of triggered bills, another issue that needs to take or thinking. So there's lots of things need to be looked at when restoring somebody's sleep. So it's yeah, yeah, definitely. Definitely. Well, thank you so much for coming on today. I'll make sure that I link that download in the show notes. So our listeners have access to that minor. Thank you so much for joining us. You're welcome. The pleasure. My pleasure.
Sleep is such a hot topic and I'm so glad we discussed it today. You hear me talk about sleep a lot, right? As we move forward this week, I want you to be mindful about your sleep. How many hours of sleep are you getting? How do you feel when you wake up? Mindfulness is always the best starting point. You may realize, like I have that it's time to make sleep a priority. And I promise you when you do, you will feel like a new woman. Okay? Speaking of women, if you're not part of the functional medicine for weight loss, body, mind, soul wellness for women group on Facebook, you are missing out my friend. You will love the support, the accountability, but also the sense of humor. Like this is the place where you can be. You, you can be real. It's refreshing. They'll go to Bitly forward slash fem women's wellness again, that's Italy, B I T dot L Y forward slash F M women's wellness.
And before you go, don't forget, I have a free gift for you. It is just for the spiraling mom. Have you ever been there? I know I have the spiraling mom to regain some control and get some peace. It's the five habits for the spiraling mom. You gain inner peace and total control. Doesn't that sound just like what you're looking for. You can access that at Bitly forward slash peace and control. Again, that's bit dot L Y for red slash HES and control. Now the helping harmony podcast is doing a slight schedule change and shifting to every other week. I am beyond excited about all the topics and the incredible guest speakers coming up. You don't want to miss anything to stay in the loop, be sure and subscribe to this podcast and make sure you're plugged in to that Facebook group that I just told you about. Remember my friend we're in this together. Bye y'all.