How do you sleep? Do you slip into a blissful slumber with ease or find it difficult to drop-off? Does your mind wake you up in the middle of the night whirring with thoughts or maybe wake you up much earlier than you need to be? Are disturbed sleeping patterns affecting your performance at work?
If so, read on for an interesting research study, my mindful top tips to a better sleep and a free Mindfulness for Sleep audio.
I really believe that a good nights sleep is at the root of our wellbeing. Yes, we also need nourishment from food, take regular exercise and make the right decisions for our mental and physical wellbeing but if we are tired we may end up reaching for the quick-fix food, not having the energy to move or have the clarity and awareness to make those important decisions.
The aim of mindfulness is simply to be aware more often of our present moment experiences but one of the many positive side effects is a better quality of sleep, which I truly believe has been instrumental in many of my client's transformations. Someone on my MBCT Mindfulness for Wellbeing course this week said that he is less disturbed, more able to fall back to sleep if he does wake at 2am and consequently is more able to handle the challenges of work - and kids, the following day!
"Compared with the people in the sleep education group, those in the mindfulness group had less insomnia, fatigue, and depression at the end of the six sessions."
Now, you know I LOVE science and if you do too then you might like to read this article about how 'mindfulness helps fight insomnia and improves sleep' by clicking the following link: https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/mindfulness-meditation-helps-fight-insomnia-improves-sleep-201502187726
So, if you're having trouble getting to, or staying in, the land of nod, try my mindful top tips for a better sleep
1. Set yourself up by mindfully thinking about what is a realistic bedtime for you and make a conscious effort to switch off all tech a good 1hr before then, which will encourage production of your natural sleep hormone, Melatonin, making you feel drowsy around the time you need to be for sleeping.
2. ...and breathe! Breathing deeply into your abdomen will help you to gather your busy mind, pulling your attention away from thinking and focussing on the sensations of you breath instead, switching off your stress response and relaxing you in preparation for sleep. Breathing slowly and deeply in this way also stimulates the Vagus nerve, soothing and calming your heart rate and lungs, truly relaxing you from the inside out so that you can more easily drift into a peaceful slumber.
3. Get your thoughts down on paper. Take a pad and pen to bed and write down all of your thoughts - all of them, the big ones, small ones, worrisome ones, 'to do' ones and even the 'OMG, where did that come from?' ones! Writing your thoughts down can be really dis-empowering to overwhelming thoughts and I always suggest keeping the notepad on your bedside table so you can 'de-junk' your thoughts and remember your creative ones when they wake up in the middle of the night.
4. Listen to some guided mindfulness audio either just before or once you are in bed and you could try my FREE Mindfulness for Sleep audio by clicking HERE
If you are interested to learn more about how MBCT Mindfulness can help guide you into better sleep, improve your general wellbeing or improve the wellbeing of your workplace then please get in touch with me, Tricia, on 07776 132083 | firstname.lastname@example.org | www.themindhub.co.uk