You might sleep quite a decent number of hours, but waking up you lack energy for the morning? If your sleep doesn’t feel satisfying, you can try to enrich it. Appraise our techniques and use them for at least a month, and you will see that the effectiveness of your rest will significantly improve. It is really simple!
There are a few things to learn before we begin. First, the circadian rhythm is “programmed” for our entire body. This means that every cell and organ has specific tasks to perform while you sleep which is why you should respect the day-night cycle so that your body can implement its plan. Secondly, diet has a huge impact on our functioning. If you want to eat a hearty meal – go for breakfast or lunch. A late lunch or dinner should be light and undemanding to your digestive system. Finally – the temperature. Your sleep will not be deep and healthy if the bedroom is too hot or too cold. Find your optimal temperature and try to maintain it.
1. Qigong technique
Although this Eastern Chinese practice contains many exercises that simultaneously regulate breath, mind and physicality, there is one that’s easy for anyone to accomplish at bedtime.
Sit cross-legged, barefoot, on a hard (but comfortable) surface. Clear the mind of all thoughts, make sure that there is emptiness. Focus on breathing that you can prolong. Take some air through your nose, then breathe out loud through your mouth. Repeat this process four times. Now massage the foot with one finger. Make a circular motion to the right with your finger for 3 minutes. Then do the same with the other foot.
2. Autogenic training
This technique is extremely effective not only in the treatment of sleep disorders but also in anxiety and psychosomatic disorders. It was developed by a neurologist and specialist in hypnosis, Johannes H. Schultz. The main purpose of this method is to focus attention on our physicality, which leads us to a state of deep relaxation.
Caution! For this workout, you can use a weighted blanket instead of a regular mat or rug. Microbeads inside the sensory blanket will also help you focus your attention on individual parts of the body. The blanket also stimulates the nervous system to lower cortisol levels and produce more serotonin.
Lie on a regular blanket, sensory blanket or exercise mat. Make sure you feel comfortable. Close your eyes and focus on your left arm. Repeat in your mind, “my left arm is heavy, it’s really heavy and it’s also warm.” Repeat this sentence several times (minimum 5), and eventually, you will feel exactly that the arm becomes as you said. This exercise can be used with different parts of the body, you can also go from top to bottom – first address the head and hair, followed by the chest and shoulders and so on. Breathe deeply and slowly lift the parts of the body that you described. Then repeat, “I am relaxed, really relaxed” several times.
3. Work with imagination
Visualization is one of the most effective methods for helping to achieve a state of relaxation and treatment of physical pain (!). This is mainly because it is based on the idea that the mind and body are connected to each other. This strong bond is something that you can use to your advantage in everyday life. How can you train your mind with this technique?
Sit comfortably on the bed, in an armchair, or wherever you will feel comfortable. Turn on relaxing music that you enjoy, it is important that it is not too stimulating. Try to focus your thoughts on the sounds and on what your imagination brings. Let yourself be carried away by the images or memories that come into your mind. Try to imagine as much detail as possible – if you see the forest, what are the trees there, how does the grass smell, or what birds are sitting on their branches. All your senses should be activated and susceptible to various stimuli. Try to feel the freshness of the sea air, the smell of flowers or the warmth of the sun falling on your skin.