Sleeping pills are a simple, but not the best way to combat insomnia. To improve your sleep patterns, try meditation. Learn how to meditate before bed.
Research shows that meditation promotes healthy sleep. very relaxing and calming. According to the Sleep Foundation (USA), meditation can help combat anxiety and trouble falling asleep. Probably due to a decrease in pain sensitivity and stress, which can disturb sleep.
When you meditate, there are activity changes in certain parts of the brain, including the thalamus and amygdala, which play a role in the perception of fear and discomfort. For example, studies show that meditation can reduce symptoms of depression and feelings of pain, as well as anxiety, thereby helping you fall asleep faster.
How to Meditate Before Sleep
There are several ways to meditate before going to bed – sitting, moving (walking, yoga). You can listen to music while lying in bed and meditating. There are also dedicated meditation apps.
Here are some tips on how to do a simple meditation before bed.
- For best results, try meditating for about an hour before bed.
- Get into a comfortable sitting or fibbing position. Try to focus on your breathing. Breathe evenly, counting to four as you inhale and exhale. Try breathing in via your nose and out through your mouth. Some find it more soothing. Watch your breath and try not to be distracted by extraneous thoughts.
- Notice the sensations in your body. Try to “breathe” lightness into a part of the body that seems tense and heavy. Imagine that your muscles relax, and the body becomes light. Relax the facial muscles, especially around the eyes and mouth. Raise and then relax your shoulders, chest, and neck, imagining that you are “melting”.
- You can imagine something calm and peaceful, for example, falling snow, waves running ashore.
It has been observed that a short meditation (20 minutes) helps to feel more energetic even when you have not slept much. This is again because the practice reduces stress, relieves nervous tension, and relaxes the body.
I must say that meditation is a good way to normalize sleep patterns, but in some cases, it may not be effective enough. For example, if insomnia is associated with taking certain medications, severe pain, severe depression, or an anxiety disorder.
However, meditation should not replace a full night’s sleep of 7-9 hours. Let’s not forget that the main goal of the practice is relaxation, relieving physical and emotional stress that prevents you from falling asleep normally in the evening.
Your meditations will be more effective if you stick to a routine of going to bed and getting up at the same time. Your room should be conducive to sleep. Make it cool, dark, and quiet. Two hours before bedtime, stop using electronic gadgets, such as a computer. Better read, play with your pet, stretch, and take a relaxing bath.