Are You Dealing With Insomnia? Here’s Why You Need Meditation For Better Sleep
Do you struggle to switch off at night?
You’re not alone. In fact, approximately 60% of people suffer from some form of insomnia, and trouble sleeping is a long-term, chronic issue for around 10% of us.
One way to tackle your bedtime woes is through meditation.
You may envisage a deeply spiritual or religious group practice, but meditation is a very personal activity. Plus, it’s something you can practice at any time. In fact, many people now use nightly meditation for better sleep.
Let’s start by taking a look at what meditation is all about, then break down why it works so well for the sleep deprived.
What Meditation is All About
- Preserve the aging brain
- Reduce mind-wandering
- Improve concentration
- Reduce depression & anxiety
- Help tackle addiction
Meditation has even been used by professionals to treat symptoms of PTSD.
How to Meditate
There’s not one, set way to meditate. That’s the best thing about it. It’s a personal and flexible practice that you can really make your own.
Here are a few common meditation technique ideas:
- In bed using meditative music
- A guided meditation via audio track
- Deep abdominal breathing
- Vocalizing a mantra
But how exactly does meditation help you snooze? Let’s take a deep dive on why you should use meditation for better sleep.
1. It Helps with Mental Separation
If you’re anything like most people, you lay down in bed, only to be consumed with anxiety for the future, or thoughts of the day gone. Or maybe you tend to get hung up, thinking about what you should have said to that jerk in the office.
For those struggling with particularly high-stress levels, or dealing with depression and anxiety, these thoughts can run rampant and prevent you from relaxing at all.
Plus, you often spend your days on-the-go, rushing around from place to place, without the time to be distracted by thoughts and feelings. This is why, when it’s time to hit the sack, everything seems to jump into your mind at once.
Thankfully, meditation can help your brain reduce these distractions and let you get a better night’s rest. By using meditation, you can collect together your thoughts, accept them and then let them go.
Many people find meditation provides a space for accepting their thoughts and feelings, without self-judgment. When you do this, the brain often allows the thoughts to pass from your active consciousness, allowing you to feel more at peace.
2. It Prepares Both the Mind and Body for Rest
Just before bed is the perfect time to use meditation for better sleep.
Regular practice of meditation at this time can train your brain to know that meditation comes right before sleep. In fact, choosing to meditate before sleep can trigger a parasympathetic nervous system response, helping not only your mind, but also your body, to relax.
Physical restlessness can be as much of a problem for insomniacs as mental activity. Luckily, meditation tackles both.
3. It Eases Physical Tension
Guided meditations, in particular, are excellent for connecting with different parts of your physical being. Such meditations will often encourage you to tense and then relax various body parts, or to feel the weight of your limbs against your mattress.
By doing this, you help your muscles relax and begin to notice common patterns of tension that you hold in your body. Meditation also helps you to ‘breathe into’ different parts of the body, so that they remain at the forefront of your awareness.
An improved mind-body connection is a powerful tool, and with time you’ll be able to ease this tension yourself, without the guided prompts.
4. It Doesn’t Take Long
Nobody wants to add another task to their nightly routine. We get that.
The good news is that your meditation practice needn’t take long. Research has shown that even just 5 minutes of daily meditation is associated with positive outcomes.
Some people even choose to meditate while already in bed, so they can drift straight off to sleep during the latter stages of their practice. In fact, if you’re the type of person who struggles to just ‘switch-off,’ meditation can provide a useful transition between a wakeful and sleep state.
5. It Naturally Aids Sleep
From prescription pills to natural supplements and obscure folk remedies, there are thousands of options which claim to help you get some much-needed rest. But with the number of insomniacs in the world, something doesn’t add up.
Here’s the truth. Meditation is a technique that’s been proven capable of treating insomnia, with excellent patient acceptance and durable results. The best part is that meditation comes with none of the side-effects you may experience with medicines or supplements.
6. Its Effects Are Long-Lasting
You can use meditation for better sleep, but your evening practice can also help you deal with daytime stressors, too.
For many people, meditation sounds like an excellent idea, but one which they struggle to add to their daily routine. There’s just too much going on. Plus, any brief moment of peace is usually seen as ‘catch-up’, rather than relaxation time.
That’s why night-time meditation is perfect. Not only will it help you sleep (and wake up refreshed), but regular meditative practice gives you to tools to stay ‘in the moment’, no matter the task. Over time, these skills can be used in your daily life to help you cope with the frenzy of modern living.
Use Meditation for Better Sleep
So there you have it.
6 reasons why meditation can lead to a better night’s sleep, and help cure your insomnia.
If you’re keen to add meditation to your nightly routine, check out our Serotonin meditation program, Sleep Improver, and others, and find the perfect audio tracks to supplement your new-found sleep aid.