Benefits of Meditation for Anxiety and Sleep
Have you ever had one of those nights where you are tossing and turning and basically doing backflips in bed?
All you can think about is what is coming up the next day.
Maybe it’s an interview, a big presentation or maybe you’re playing over and over in your head something you said to someone 2 years ago on a Tuesday…
That’s me. That’s what I do.
I catastrophise and think of the worst possible scenario and over think the past when the anxiety creeps in. I can’t sleep.
So, I have started to try a little meditation before bed in the hope that it will help me to ease my worries and get some shut eye.
Meditation for sleep and anxiety has really helped me to switch off, get some sleep and to be ready for the next day.
Meditation for sleep and anxiety – how does it work?
When you struggle with sleep it mostly comes from a place of stress and anxiety.
Meditation is thought to improve your relaxation and help to control the sympathetic nervous system.
It can even increase melatonin, which is the hormone that drives sleep.
Meditation has been a form of relaxation for thousands of years. The oldest documentation of meditation was recorded 5,000 to 3,500 BCE
Becky’s routine – meditation for sleep and anxiety
I use a wind down to start with. I learned this practice from Headspace, which is a fantastic app for guided meditation, sleep casts and wind downs.
My go to wind down, which I can do without the app now, is this:
Take a few deep breaths. Don’t worry about counting. Just in through the nose, out through the mouth.
Imagine you have a ray of light filling up from your toes all the way to the top of your head. Imagine each body part being warmed by this light as you visualise it making its way up your body.
This takes around 5 minutes.
Now I have wound down, it is time to let my thoughts go.
I take deep breaths and let thoughts come and go. Another I find useful when I am feeling particularly anxious is breathe in positivity, breathe out negativity.
I heard a great tip once. This is to imagine your thoughts as cars going round a roundabout.
Rather than get in the car with them and whizz about, you just watch from a distance as they come and go.
This really helps me if I am in one of those heart fluttering bouts of anxiety.
Meditation for sleep and anxiety is a great way for me to unwind and let go of the day.
Rachel’s meditation for sleep and anxiety tips
Rachel shared with me some of her tips and tricks for meditation and mindfulness that help her deal with daily stress and worries.
Here are a few things she has learned over the years.
- Get comfortable. You don’t have to be sitting upright cross legged if that isn’t comfortable for you.
- Forget counting. Don’t get so caught up in your counting that you get stressed – that is the opposite of what you are trying to achieve!
- Be in the moment. All we have is now. Take time to be in the present wherever you are.
- Driving? Think about how the steering wheel feels under your hands.
- Walking? Look at the bee collecting pollen in the flower by your feet. Be present.
- Drop your shoulders. Relax your jaw.
I hope that by following some wind down and meditation practices before bed that you can relax and get some much needed rest.
Remember, don’t stress yourself out trying to count backwards from 20,000 or even remembering how to breathe. There are no hard and fast rules for meditation.
You do what works for you.
Sweet dreams, sisters.
Our Remedy xoxo