We all have them! (mine was last night) tossing and turning — Can’t get comfortable, thoughts racing, time is running & you’re starting to panic. 1/3 of the population suffers from insomnia; but not all sleeplessness is identical. Where some struggle to fall asleep, many more of us wake in the early hours. It’s the worst! Hopefully, you’re feeling less alone because it’s perfectly normal to wake up. Doctors say it’s usually between 2am-4am (which makes so much sense!) I was wide awake at 3am last night, and that’s always the time I seem to rise! (Boo!) Below, I’m sharing 5 tips to falling back asleep (in under 20 minutes!) — Sleep, you’re mine! // IMAGE VIA
No Clock: Fun fact: I do not sleep with a clock. It wasn’t until my fiancé started noticing my nightly routine (I would often wake him up in frustration) & removed it! If you’re like me: you would compulsively check it throughout the night! There’s really no point — you have the alarm set, so just let your body rest, and embrace on not knowing! It seriously makes a huge difference! Give it a try!
Get Up: Wait, a minute! Read on! If you’re awake for more than 15 minutes, get out of bed and sit somewhere else (but don’t fall asleep!) Why? This will mentally label your bed as ‘being awake and frustrated’ — Train your mind, and associate the chair as wakefulness (I repeat: do not fall asleep in the chair!) Do something relaxing: listen to music, read a book and as soon as you start feeling sleepy again, climb back into bed. Reinforcing your brain that sleep is for bed will help catch those Z’s faster!
Roll Your Eyes: Ha, if you’re not doing this already! Close your eyes and slowly roll your eyeballs upward. Research says that when you tilt your eyeball 20 degrees, the brain shifts to a more ‘relaxed’ state, by slowing brain waves. Who would have known!?
Count Your Blessings: Rewind your day, close your eyes and breathe deeply. Start thinking of all the positive things that have happened (in order). This exercise will help you fall asleep faster, as you engage with the ‘prefrontal cortex’ of the brain which leaves you feeling happy/calm. Let those positive thoughts take over, not the negative.
Tense it Up: Tense your muscles, then relax them. (If you go to yoga, you will notice this exercise toward the end of class) — Do this over and over throughout your body, start with the toes, and slowly work your way up. It could help you land those Z’s!