Okay, not everyone has this problem; in fact, most of the time I’m so tired that it’s hard to stay awake during the day. But from time to time I have a hard time falling asleep, and I know there are many people who have this problem pretty often. There are medicines that help with that, but they can have some scary side effects, and it’s always better to go the natural route. Here are some things to try to help you fall asleep:
- Breathing. Focusing on your breathing clears your mind and helps you relax. Close your eyes and breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth.
- Acupressure. Use your fingertips to apply pressure to the space on top of your nose between your eyebrows.
- Get out of bed. Sometimes you need a break from trying to fall asleep, and staying in bed wide awake can get frustrating. Leave your bedroom and do something else for a few minutes.
- Breathe through your left nostril. Lie on your left side and hold your right nostril closed while you breathe slowly and deeply. Doing this lowers your blood pressure and calms you down.
- Sleep paradox. Close your eyes and tell yourself you have to stay awake. Your brain will rebel and you’ll start to feel sleepy.
- Visualize relaxing. Picture yourself in your zen space. It really helps!
- Roll your eyes. Close your eyes and roll them up and down, mimicking the movement of falling asleep. This may trigger the release of melatonin, a sleep hormone.
- Comfortable sleep environment. Sleep in a cool, quiet, dark room. Wear comfortable sleep clothing and have comfortable bedding.
- Turn off devices. Not only can your phone or computer be a source of stress, but the light emitted by electronics stimulate your brain, making it even harder to fall asleep.
Next time you find yourself counting endless sheep (and fyi, there are lots of people who swear this works), give some of these tricks a chance and see how they work for you. Sweet dreams!