Finding it difficult to sleep at night? Can’t stop thinking about the to-do lists, the memos, and the mails? Have too many negative thoughts that are making it impossible for you to rest?
This is the story of so many people today. The workload is huge, the responsibilities keep on pilling up, anxiety and depression have become commonplace, there is no peace.
How can one get a goodnight’s sleep while juggling all this?
This International Peace Day, let these mindfulness meditations offer you the peace of mind you need to fall asleep.
But first, what is mindfulness?
Mindfulness is the journey from restlessness to calm, from an unhealthy mind to a healthy one. It brings your mind from the past or the future (where it usually dwells) to the present (where it should be).
Mindfulness meditations will help you become conscious and aware of the thoughts that are not helping you, and slowly bring your attention to the present moment where everything is okay and you are safe and fine.
The mind has a habit of amplifying our worries and dismissing our joys. Through mindful meditation, you will transform your mind to do just the opposite. This will bring you more peace, and thus, improve your sleep.
Apart from calming you down and helping you sleep peacefully, mindfulness meditations also alleviate gastrointestinal problems and lower high blood pressure. They are also known to help with heart diseases.
Mindfulness Meditation enhances your ability to focus. According to several studies, people who practice meditation do not get affected by distractions. Minor inconveniences do not rattle them and they don’t get anxious easily too. Their ability to recall information also is far better than people who do not meditate.
Mindfulness meditation for peaceful sleep
Here are two mindfulness meditation techniques you can try before sleeping:
Bring your attention to your breathing
There are various breathing techniques for sleep that you can try. One involves lying down with your arms rested on your sides and close your eyes. Once you feel comfortable, bring your attention to your breathing. Watch the breath entering your body and leaving it through your nose. That simple!
However, if focusing is hard, say breathe in and breathe out (in your mind) as you inhale and exhale.
As you breathe, feel your chest go up and down. You can even bring your attention to your navel as you do this. This technique of watching (with the mind’s eye) the navel as an aid to meditation is called Omphaloskepsis.
Scan your body from head to toe
In this mindfulness technique, you take your attention to every part of your body.
Lie down on your back. Keep your eyes closed and bring your attention to your left toe. Now slowly move the focus from the toe to the entire foot. Go to the ankle now, and then slowly move to leg, the calf, the left knee, and the thigh. Make sure you move your attention to these parts very slowly. Go to the right toe now, and repeat the whole process for the right side.
Once both legs are done, bring your attention to your pelvic area, feel that it is relaxing under your watch. Take your attention to the hips now. Feel that there is no pain, your attention is healing it.
In the same way, take the attention to the back, your stomach, chest, both your hands, your shoulders, the neck, your face and finally your forehead. More than often, you will be fast asleep before you have crossed the hips. No wonder it is considered as the best sleep meditation.
The Dalai Lama said that sleep is the best meditation. But if you are not getting any, these sleep meditations, in turn, will help you immensely to achieve that ultimate meditation.
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