6 Mindfulness Tricks For A Better Night's Sleep
By Genevieve Smith
While springing forward means we’re one step closer to those long summer days, the first few weeks after the time change can leave people feeling groggy and under-rested. After all, your 10 p.m. bedtime will now feel like 9 p.m., until you adjust.
So how can you use mindfulness to help get the body into rest mode and help you wake up feeling refreshed and re-adjusted?
Inhale through your nostrils for three seconds, hold the breath for two seconds, and then exhale from your mouth for four seconds. Your thoughts may wander, which is natural. Gently acknowledge that your mind is wandering, and then return your mind to the breathing.
Meditate on a Focus Phrase or Intention
Try the sound “Om” or the phrase, “Breathe in calm, breathe out tension.” A central sound or phrase repeated during breathing exercises can help you to maintain focus.
Mindfulness Throughout the Day
Acknowledge anxious thoughts as they arise in your day and find a neutral tone toward them. A mantra progression I’ve learned is "anxious thought":
- “I’m having this thought that (insert anxious thought here).”
- “I’m noticing that I’m having this thought that (insert anxious thought here).”
Ensure that you acknowledge the thought, while diffusing the thought and distancing yourself from it.
Do a Body Scan
Do a grounding body scan that roots you back in the present. You can start at the top of your head and mentally check in with elements like temperature and pressure in each body part, until you reach your toes. Find helpful guided meditation audio recordings here to help you find your groove.
Be Mindful of Your Environment
Tune into your living space and become aware of what may be stressing you out. Take the time to clear your rooms in a way which helps you find peace of mind throughout the day, and at the end of each night.
Reduce Screen Time in Bed
Being on your phone or computer can keep you up in two ways: the general brightness of the screen, which keeps your mind active after dark, or the cumulative anxiety from feeling as if you’ve spent too much time on your device throughout the day. Though Apple has developed “Night Shift” to adjust the brightness of your iPhone’s screen after-hours, you may want to turn to a book or magazine after a self-designated hour. Practice mindfulness throughout the day to ensure you feel you’re striking a happy balance between screen time and other activities, for your personal sweet spot.
To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic.