In order to feel bright and positive during the daytime, it’s essential for both body and mind that you have a good night’s sleep. If your mind is still whirring away, thinking on the events of your day, you’ll struggle to switch off and sleep soundly. So, how do you put your mind to sleep so that your body follows?
Go to bed when you’re tired
Many people go to bed before they’re ready to go to sleep. If your mind is still busy, you will probably just lie there feeling wide awake and the sleep you need will elude you.
If you don’t fall asleep within about 20 minutes of retiring to bed, try reading or listening to music. Choose a book that doesn’t challenge your brain and tunes that are chilled-out and tranquil.
Create the right environment for sleep
Your bedroom must be appointed in such a way that it invites sleep. Keep the room cool; if you’re too hot, you won’t sleep. Too much light can make falling asleep a challenge so draw your curtains, and use an eye mask if it’s still light outside when you go to bed. This can be a particular problem if you work shifts and you need to sleep during the daylight hours.
Don’t leave electronic devices plugged in overnight in your bedroom; the static and electrical leakage from chargers and plug sockets can interfere with sleep patterns.
It must also be quiet in your room. If your home is on a main road and you have intrusive traffic noise to cope with, try wearing ear plugs when you go to bed to mute sounds that might disturb you.
Mental relaxation exercises
The key to switching off your brain is to distract it from your current concerns and worries, or from work projects that you’re turning over in your head.
Guided meditation CDs or downloads can be very effective at calming your mind, easing anxiety, and allowing you to drift off to sleep. Another very simple and effective technique for mental relaxation is to imagine that you are walking along a beach or through the countryside; what can you see, hear, and smell? Concentrate on creating a mental picture of your walk; your mind will quickly switch off and you’ll drift off to sleep.
A good night’s sleep is essential for your physical and mental wellbeing. The tips above should be helpful, but always consult your doctor if you suffer from severe anxiety that prevents you from sleeping.