For the longest time I had a problem falling asleep. I would stay up until 2-3-4 in the morning, claiming that I just wasn’t sleepy. After doing some research in that area I realized that I wasn’t sleepy because I did some things that would wake me up. Now I regularly go to bed before midnight and have no problem falling asleep.
Here are some of the things that you can do to help you fall asleep.
1. Stop eating 10-12 hours before the time when you usually get up, and eat a healthy breakfast as soon as you can.
Recent study suggests that humans have two kinds of biological clocks. One is due to the light cycle, and another one, less know, due to the food intake cycle. Basically the way it works is that your body looks at the longest period of time that you go without food, and determents it to be the night. It also looks at the time when you break your fast, and determents it to be the time when the food becomes available – morning. Then your body adjusts your natural sleeping pattern to make sure that you sleep during the “night” and wake up in the “morning”. At the same time eating something late at night stimulates your body to produce energy and it wakes you up. By not eating after 9pm and eating a healthy breakfast in the morning you will greatly increase your chances of getting a good night sleep.
2. Finish all stimulating activities at least 30 minutes before you go to bed.
This means turn off TV, Computer and any bright lights. All of the these are stimulating to your brain, and will keep you awake for a while. But you knew that already.
3. Journal to de-clutter your brain.
Since your TV is off and you now have extra 30 minutes, it is a good idea to spend this time clearing up your mind. You will be surprised to find out how much calmer you will fill after putting all of your thoughts out on paper. You can also take this opportunity to make a plan for the activities that you want to accomplish tomorrow, giving yourself a head start.
4. Do breathing exercises right before you lay down to go to sleep.
Breathing is the only subconscious function of our organism that we can consciously control. (Think about it, we cannot control our blood pressure, temperature, or pulse rate, but we can control our breathing). Therefore the breathing exercises are the gateway to our subconscious mind. Recommended breathing technique for falling asleep is taking deep abdominal breathes for about a minute or two. This can be accomplished by placing one hand on your belly and another one on your chest. Try to inflate and deflate your stomach as much as possible while keeping your chest still. Repeat this five to ten times and you should begin to feel more relaxed.
5. Visualize until you fall asleep.
Close your eyes, after you lay down, and try to visualized a happy and relaxing place. You can imagine yourself on board of a ship looking over the ocean, or laying in the grass looking at the sky. Strive to see as many details as possible. The colours, what other people are wearing, what is happening around you. If you have difficulties visualizing a complex event, try to visualize a single colour instead. Choose a mellow colour like blue or white, instead of stimulating colours like red or bright yellow. Some people report that they are able to see multiple collared dots “flying” through their line of sight after they close their eyes. If you share a similar experience you can substitute visualizing with observe these dots.
That is it. As a last note I want to remind you to make sure that your place of rest is comfortable and well ventilated.
I wish you to sleep well!