If you’ve been reading my blog for any amount of time, then you will know that I am a huge fan of meditation. In this post, I will be touching on the benefits that meditation holds for your sleep and sleeping patterns.
The practice of meditation can help you get the sleep you need – a deeper and more refreshing sleep will make you feel more refreshed and alert the next day. Meditation can also help people who have trouble falling asleep by relaxing the muscles and the mind so that sleep comes more quickly, and the deeper breathing rhythms have an immediate positive impact on the entire nervous system.
Many people take a wide variety of pills for a variety of reasons. Adding sleeping pills to the mix can cause sleep interruption and next-day drowsiness. Meditation, in my humble opinion, is a much better way to go, but if you are only starting out then please be patient – it can take time and practice to master the art enough to get the results that you need.
There are so many wonderful ways to meditate – with or without music, candles, sitting quietly and letting your mind wander or the more intense techniques of yoga meditation. Meditation eases your stress and calms your worries so that you’ll fall asleep more peacefully.
I am also a firm believer in the healing power of dreams, so getting a good sleep is paramount in setting the stage for having as many harmonious and informative dream time experiences as possible!
In order to get your prepared to finely focus on your meditation, try some tricks of the trade such as a mantra (a positive phrase repeated in your mind or aloud), deep breathing or relaxing CDs. I am a huge fan of mantras, as I am a fan of meditation and good sleep!
There are not many public yoga classes these days that offer mantra practice, but there were many years ago when I first started teaching. I adore the power of sound and vibration, and its ability to heal the mind and body on so many levels.
The very first book I ever bought to dive deeper into mantra was by Thomas Ashley-Farrand, Healing Mantras. It still holds as one of the most comprehensive manuals for modern day practitioners. When thoughts enter your mind that threaten to disrupt your meditation and/or mantra time, simply bring your focus back to your breath.
Then slow your breath down, and create spaces between your breath. As these spaces between the in breaths and out breaths grow wider, try to dive your focus deeper into these spaces.
Creating the following atmosphere will allow you to easily focus on your meditation:
- Choose a Quiet Place, Free of Distractions – It could be a room in your house or a park bench beside a lake. Try and rid the area of all distractions such as television, phones and other annoyances.
- Be Comfortable – Sit in a comfortable position, using cushions or pillows if you prefer. Dress in light, easy flowing clothing, take off your shoes and wear nothing that binds your body.
- Relax – Close your eyes and let your mind wander. You may want to use the imagery of a lake or a field of flowers to help you focus on meditating.
- Breathe – Take deep, regular breaths and focus on each one as the air enters and leaves your body. Deep breathing techniques can help to relieve stress and increase your oxygen levels.
Practicing meditation for 10 to 15 minutes per day, preferably before you go to bed, should eventually help improve your sleep patterns and assist you in getting a good night’s sleep.