Meditation not only can help you control stress, relieve negative emotions, but also help you fall asleep faster.
According to a 2017 American Psychological Association survey, 45% of Americans are struggling to get a good night’s sleep. Chronic insomnia can stem from many causes, mainly due to stress, anxiety about the next day’s work.
Jodie Skillicorn, physician, psychologist and author of Healing Depression Without Medication: A Psychiatrist’s Guide to Balancing Mind, Body, and Soul, says if you have trouble falling asleep while lying down in bed or easily waking up. in the middle of the night, come to meditate. This method is both simple and eliminates unnecessary worries and provides a sense of security to help you get a good night’s sleep.
How to sleep better by meditation
How does meditation affect sleep?
According to expert Skillicorn, meditation is useful because it calms the nerves, balances the sympathetic nervous system, triggers a stimulating reaction, with the sympathetic nervous system capable of controlling resting processes. and digestion.
When you’re stressed, your body enters a state of “readiness to fight.” The longer this condition becomes, the more tired the brain and body become. Therefore, calming the nervous system can limit the negative thoughts that affect your sleep.
Experts have long been investigating the amazing benefits of meditation on sleep. A study published in the Journal of JAMA Internal Medicine in 2015 showed that this method contributes to the treatment of sleep disorders. After meditation, adults with chronic sleeplessness noticed problems such as insomnia, depression, anxiety, stress and fatigue significantly reduced.
Meditation will eliminate most stressful thoughts and this will help you fall asleep faster. In other words, according to expert Skillicorn, the less you think, the easier you will take a nap.
Moreover, the process of breathing is also equally important. Deep, slow, steady breathing stimulates the vagus nerve associated with the limbic system, which controls people’s emotions, in the brain. According to Skillicorn, breathing deeply acts as a safety signal, helping the body to step out of stress.
How to meditate before going to bed
Just 5 minutes of meditation a day before taking a nap can significantly improve the quality of your sleep. Here are the steps:
– The first and very important job is to create an appropriate environment to take a nap. Turn off the lights, reduce the brightness of the room and away from electronic devices such as phones, computers. If possible, you should adjust the temperature accordingly. In order to sleep easily and get a good night’s sleep, light and temperature are the two top factors to consider.
– Lie down on the bed, adjust the body to create the most comfortable feeling.
– Prepare to meditate by squeezing all the muscles in the body. Straighten or bend the toes fully. Hands clenched into fists. Lift arms, legs and head off the bed. Clench your teeth. Hold this position while holding your breath for as long as possible and then relax your body, exhale through your mouth and make sounds.
– Pause for a moment and feel your body. Repeat the above step 1-2 again, ending with one exhalation, releasing all stress.
– Pause and feel the body in contact with the bed. Pay attention to the breathing process and heart rate.
– Focus on breathing. Place one hand on your chest and the other on your stomach to feel more. Air goes through the nose, down to the chest and to the abdomen.
– Pay attention to the number of inhalations. Then change your breathing pattern to send a message to your brain that everything is safe and can go to sleep. The time of exhalation is always double that of the inhalation. For example, if you inhale for 3 seconds, you need to exhale for 6 seconds. This method works to reduce the influence of the sympathetic nervous system and stimulate the body to enter a resting state.
– Continue to perform this type of breathing as you like and then return to normal breathing.
– If you start having negative thoughts or are frustrated because you haven’t slept, pay attention to the process of breathing and feeling your body again.
– Repeat the above steps until falling asleep.