If you’re like me, sometimes you find it difficult to fall asleep at night. Whether it’s because of constant worrying, aches, pains, or other reasons, insomnia or simply trouble getting to sleep can result in exhaustion, irritation, and trouble concentrating during the day. In the long run, recurring issues with falling asleep can result in sleep deprivation, stress, and negative effects on mental health.
Learning new tricks and methods to fall asleep can aid in getting more rest and having more energy for the following day. Because trouble sleeping can be the result of multiple reasons, its okay to try different techniques to find what works best for you. Different methods help different people. What’s most important is finding what helps you get the rest you deserve.
Here are some methods and tricks you can use to welcome sleep:
One method that helped me during a period of constant insomnia is sleeping or meditation music. According to the National Sleep Foundation, music “has a direct effect on the parasympathetic nervous system, which helps your body relax and prepare for sleep.” Playing calming music on Youtube or other streaming platforms not only helps you sleep but also helps calm your mind and body.
Turning off Technology
Does anyone watch TV or have their face in their phone before falling asleep? For me, turning off the TV and not browsing Instagram and Facebook are my biggest challenges and prevents me from getting a lasting amount of sleep. The National Sleep Foundation also states that the artificial blue light emitted by electronic devices delays the body’s internal clock and suppresses the sleep hormone melatonin. So, to get a more restful and fulfilling sleep (I include myself in this) logging off of social media, and turning off the lights and TV an hour before your bedtime better prepares your mind and body for sleep.
Increasing your Comfort Level
Who doesn’t love to cuddle with pillows and a comfy blanket?! Lots of pillows and comfort items in your sleeping space can help you find the sleep position that is most comfortable for you. Placing a pillow between your knees, and on your lower back can be a helpful position to jumpstart your comfort routine when trying to fall asleep. Making the temperature of your room colder and tucking yourself in can also help with increasing your comfort level when trying to fall asleep.
Being Prepared for the Morning
For many, the worries connected with the following morning can prevent getting to bed and staying asleep during the night. Preparing for the morning as best you can can help relieve anxiety and stressors linked to the morning time. This can look like ironing your clothes, packing your bag, knowing what the day will look like in a general sense, and writing a quick to-do list. For me, packing my bag and knowing what I’m going to wear makes the morning time smooth allowing me to leave on time without rushing,
Calming Your Mind with Positive Reminders
Sometimes lack of sleep is due to constant worrying and overthinking. To combat issues of a “mind filled with stuff” it can be helpful to remind yourself of good and motivational achievements to calm the mind before bed. Making mental notes of your small wins and accomplishments, thinking of three things you are grateful for, and focusing on feasible goals are not only valuable but also refreshing. Feel good before resting your head at night.
Laying still on your bed, closing your eyes, and beginning to imagine yourself falling asleep while counting down your breaths can calm and relieve excess stress from your body. Doing a quick body scan while taking each breath — feeling your muscles from your feet to your hips to your ears and to all the other parts of your body allows a slow and steady leeway into sleep.
Telling Yourself a Bedtime Story
Who says bedtime stories are only for children? Creating a dream sequence or story in your head, or even remembering a dream you had recently and replaying it can help you to unconsciously slip into sleep.
End Thoughts: Making a sleep routine
Making a sleep routine using the above methods or other methods that are beneficial to you can help you to wean down the day and prepare your mind. Along with brushing your teeth, getting your bed ready, and adjusting your bedroom for bedtime for example, what are your next steps that get you to sleep?
Nina is a Latina from Brooklyn, NY who struggles with depression and anxiety. She finds refuge and healing through her writing since she graduated from college in 2016. Nina writes to spread awareness and hope to those who struggle with their mental health silently. She also strives to motivate and encourage self-acceptance. She enjoys creating creative and uplifting content on her blog SparklyWarTanks.com where she shares her experiences, notes, poems, quotes, and articles