Top 5 Relaxation Methods Before Sleep

Falling asleep today could be a problem for many people. With the amount of time we spend on social media, our brains are working all the time, consuming truck loads of information. It could get in the way of our sleep. Here are top 5 things to add to your daily life to improve your overall health and most importantly – sleep.

Yoga

Yoga is one of the most useful activities you can choose as a relaxation method. It drastically improves quality of life and helps with healing your body from long term stress and injuries. This study (1) showed that positive impact of Yoga practice on chronic insomnia and that it could be proposed as an alternative to cognitive behavioral therapy in people who are having trouble sleeping. Another study (2) showed a significant improvements of sleep quality and reduction of insomnia in 4 to 24 weeks long exercises of mind body practices including yoga.

These Are Best Yoga Poses To Do Before Sleep

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Try to hold every pose for at least 10-15 breaths. You can do them in a sequences one after another for 2-3 cycles. It is an overall advice for beginners. As you continue your yoga journey, you’ll start to feel what way it’s better for you. No two people are exactly alike, so find what fits you. In yoga there is no right or wrong, just go with the flow.

The 4-7-8 Breathing Exercise

Breathing exercises are one of the best way to calm yourself down after long stressful day and especially right before sleep. There are several methods that you can use most of them are great and will give you a sense of relaxation.

One of the best breathing exercises you can do before going to sleep  is 4-7-8 breathing technique. The creator of this method Dr. Weil tells that this method helped many of his patients with anxiety and treatment of extreme forms of panic disorders. Over a period of 4 to 6 week you’d notice physiological changes in your body just because of this technique.

Method:

  • Inhale through your mouth for 4 second;
  • Hold breath for 7 seconds;
  • Strongly exhale through the moth for 8 second and repeat.

Benefits:

  • Lowers heart rate;
  • Lowers blood pressure;
  • Improves digestion and circulation.

Meditation

Meditation is one of the most powerful tools you can use to reduce anxiety and stress levels in your life. Its been used for hundreds of years by people who are trying to achieve calmness of the mind. The most fascinating thing about meditation is that it can be performed in many ways, yet it still gives all the benefits, here are just some of them:

  • Reduces stress;
  • Improves sleep;
  • Improves memory;
  • Boosts immune system;
  • Helps with emotional resilience;
  • Improves focus.

Mindfulness is our method of choice when it comes to meditation. When you are doing mindfulness you don’t have to control your breath, the aim so to be in the present moment and don’t think about your thoughts. Here is how to do it:

  • Sit down and take a comfortable position. Lay your hands on your legs with palms up.
  •  Concentrate on your hands for a while, think about each finger: thumb, first finger, second, third and fourth. Think about your legs the same way, your head, neck, chest, stomach and back. Feel the energy going through each part of your body as you concentrate on it;
  •  Don’t control your breath, you will breath naturally;
  •  While you are concentrating on the parts of your body, there will be thoughts coming and going through your head. Do not judge your thoughts, don’t try to define them as good or bad, just let them pass through. Don’t try to control your thought, don’t hold on to them, just watch them as if you are watching a movie. This step is the key to mindfulness. When we stop paying any attention to our thoughts, when we stop believing in our thoughts – we stop worrying. We enter another realm of our consciousness where nothing matters, where everything is flowing and living without any effort.

Hot Baht

There are many studies supporting the idea that hot bath before sleep is one the best ways to relax your body and fall asleep faster. As you get out of hot water, your body will start to balance it self out, that’s when you have lots of heat leaving your body and your core body temperature goes down very fast, making you fall asleep faster. The reason behind it is that it’s much easier to fall asleep in the cold room then it is in the hot room. By taking a hot bath you tricking the system by causing your body temperature drop and which makes you fall asleep faster.

Reading

Reading a book before bed was always known as a good thing to do right before sleep. But why? Well, it works almost the same as meditation. When we read our mind enters another world, another paradigm, where we don’t think about the think that usually  make us stressed out. When we read:

  • Heart rate slows down;
  • Blood pressure goes down;
  • Breathing slows down;
  • Muscles relax and as a result you sleep better.

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