9 Jul 2019
Having trouble falling asleep? Can’t seem to turn your brain off before bedtime?
9 Jul 2019
You can fall asleep faster and STAY asleep longer by focusing your attention on your breath – especially by consciously extending the “out” breath to help settle your mind and body and get into a more relaxed state.
Next time you find yourself having trouble falling asleep, try this simple bedtime practice (which can also be used in the evening time):
Lie on your back with your feet on a chair or at the end of your bed: rest here for a few breaths.
Do a simple body scan from the feet to head: give yourself full permission to completely relax your entire body. Gently pass your attention through each part of the body starting from the bottoms of your feet – moving from one side of the body to the other – or in whatever direction feels the most fluid to you, until you reach the top of your head.
Then, observe your natural breath: for 6 full breaths, observe your natural inhalation and exhalation as it comes. If your attention wanders in this time or you lose track, that’s ok, bring it right back and begin again from wherever you left off. *Inhale free, Exhale free – for 6 full breaths*
Finish off with a focus on the inhalation: observe your inhalation and count the length of your exhale as you gradually extend the exhale – carry this out over the course of 6 full breaths. If your mind wanders, gently guide it back. *Inhale free, count and gradually extend the exhale breath – for 6 full breaths*
- If the mind is still feeling active after these 4 steps, try increasing from 6 breaths to 12 breaths.
- If you are having trouble concentrating or relaxing, incorporate the simple movement of bringing your knees in towards your chest on the exhale, and bringing your knees away from you on the inhale.
- Remember to be gentle with yourself.
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