Calm the Mind and Wind Down Before Sleep

February 6, 2019

Awww Sleep, it’s amazing isn’t it? BUT, when you’re not sleeping it can feel like your whole life is out of whack. Since having my hormones change a little, I’m finding it hard to wind down and stay asleep at night. I end up waking up two or three times for absolutely no reason. It makes me CRAZY! I started to change my bedtime routine, and I can already see a huge difference.

Do you find it difficult to get a good night’s rest? Toss and turn much? You are not alone,  nearly 30% of adults in the United States are regularly sleep deprived. I love what Jason Ong, a sleep psychologist at Rush University Medical Center says about sleep and why there’s hope to the sleep deprived: “Each night is a new night. Be open and try something different! What you have been doing to this point is probably not working well.”

Here’ a few suggestions to help you wind down and get some decent Zzz’s tonight…

Dim the lights 1 hour before bedtime. Start winding down the brain and body by dimming the lights. Engage in relaxing activities outside the bedroom that pass the time quietly.

Avoid looking at anything with a screen. We know it’s difficult, but it’s a must! Stow away your tablet, phone, computer, and TV for the night—the light can keep you awake and alert.

Ten minutes before bedtime, begin a focused mindfulness exercise.

-Sit in a comfortable chair in the same dimly lit room. Imagine the outline of your body and slowly trace it in your head.

-Keep in mind the amount of pressure you’re feeling against the chair or the ground and be mindful of where there’s more pressure and where there’s less. Start with your head. Is it touching the back of the chair? How heavy does it feel against the chair, wall, or just the air?

-Then slowly move down to your ear, then shoulder, arm, and leg. Work down to your feet and then back up the other side of your body. Take about five minutes for this exercise.

If your mind begins to wander, notice that it wandered and get back on track. Try to avoid judging yourself—your mind will indeed wander; the skill lies in getting it back on track.

Get in bed and focus on your breath. If you are unable to fall asleep, get up, sit in the comfortable chair again and repeat the exercise. Don’t get back into bed until you’re sleepy—and don’t sleep in the chair!

Nighty night, don’t let the bed bugs bite!


Denise and Emily

What’s your tried and true goodnight sleep routine? Share your sleep secrets with us, leave a comment below!

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