There are various ways to try and avoid sleepless nights, but many aren't effective. This simple method has the power to lull you to sleep but must be done slowly.
Do you spend half the night counting sheep? Luckily, there’s another, easier way to get to sleep. Insomnia or trouble nodding off and staying asleep can make you tired and irritable. Develop the habit of carrying out this relaxing exercise when you hit the hay, though, and you’ll soon visit the land of Nod.
When you go to bed, lie on your back, and with your eyes closed, take deep belly breaths. Imagine air traveling way down in your body. Feel your lungs expand and your diaphragm rise. Inhale and exhale slowly, and evenly.
Continue to breathe deeply, just following your breath with your attention.
If thoughts come, see them but don’t worry about them. Return your attention to breathing slowly in and out. If you find you are uncomfortable or want to scratch an itch, do so. Wiggle into a position that supports your body and helps you relax.
When you are ready, move your attention to the soles of your feet and begin to relax even more. Just think about how your feet feel, and their weight. You might feel them start to tingle as you rest your awareness on them. Move your attentiveness to your left foot, noticing the bedding touching it, the temperature, and how heavy it’s becoming. Let your mind linger there for a while until you recognize your left foot feels heavier than your right foot.
Then, turn your attention to your right foot, and repeat the exercise. Take your time; there’s no need to rush. Then notice both feet at once, how heavy they are, the temperature, and whether they are comfortable or not. Spend some time paying attention to both feet at once.
Continue to repeat the exercise, moving slowly up your body, noticing your arms, one at a time, and then both together, your torso, one side first, then the other, and then the whole of your chest. Do the same with your legs, hands, and all other parts of your body. Linger on each area, giving it plenty of attention. Finish at the top of your scalp, waiting there a few minutes, and then becoming aware of your whole body, its weight, the temperature, and how relaxed you feel.
By the time you’ve finished the exercise, provided you don’t rush, you will either be fast asleep or deeply relaxed and ready to nod off. The key to making it work is slowing down your mind, which happens when you spend ample time focusing on each area of your body. The chatter in your head will stop, and you’ll be better able to relax fully.
If the exercise doesn’t work for you, perhaps there’s a good reason you can’t sleep that needs addressing. Consider whether your mind’s overstimulated, or your digestive system is working overtime due to dealing with a large meal. Then again, are you taking medication that might influence your sleep? Or, perhaps you have too many worries on your mind? Dealing with the cause of insomnia will bring relief.
Also Read: Does Chamomile Tea Help in Sleeping?
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