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Struggling to Sleep

If you are struggling to sleep, create some space in your mind. Here are 3 simple habits to help settle your mind after a busy day.

1. Say goodnight to your devices: The first thing we need to pay attention to is getting our screens out of the room. If you have your phone or a tablet lighting up your bedside table, it’s going to disturb your sleeping patterns. It’s best if it’s not in your room at all. It’s creating activity in your mind that you have to pay attention to.

2. Don’t force it: We have to stop trying to fall asleep. Our brains are too smart for that. The moment we’re trying to do something, we’re creating stress on top of it. So, we don’t want to try and fall asleep. See if you can let go of the notion of trying to fall asleep at all.

3. Try a body scan meditation: Bring mindfulness into the sleep experience. You can do a gentle body scan practice where you’re being curious about just noticing sensations in your body and your breathing. When your attention wanders or becomes frustrated, see if you can just take note of that and gently come back to being with what’s here. When we allow ourselves to be with what’s here, the body naturally goes to rest, which is what it wants to do.

You could also try to undo the tension in your body. Just 10 minutes of gentle stretching and breathing,, can bring calm to your whole body — paving the way for sleep to happen more naturally.

And lastly , observe your sleep struggles. Do you identify as “someone who struggles to sleep” — and then you struggle more? You are actually strengthening that feeling.

You can release this self-fulfilling mental pattern by cultivating  7 kind, mindfulness attitudes toward your sleep troubles. They are :

Patience,Trust,Non- judgmental,Letting go,Beginners mind,Non striving and Acceptance.

I will explain more about each of them next week .

Take care, sleep well Carole x

Carole Haywood-Poole