So you believe mediation can help you sleep? Well, yes it can. And there are some methods of meditation for sleep that might work just for you. Being a hustler and a rebel building our own future only dictated by the dreams and goals, we decide needs balancing. What’s cool now is that science is finally catching up with ancient knowledge of meditation. It literally changes the brain!
In this article, I will share two primary methods for you to try meditation for better sleep. And I will share some facts, short stories and cool things to try. Grab a cup of tea, have a read. And, please share this with one friend you care for. Just choose share button above.
First, some facts on meditation benefits found in science
Before we look into the two methods, I would like to reinforce the effect on your efforts by letting you know what the scientists now, in fact, understand the impact of meditation on the brain.
[tweet_box] “Scientists know meditation literally changes and molds the brain”[/tweet_box]
Even tho this daily life routine (which it should be) is an ancient self-healing and holistic self-improvement practice. It takes time for scientists to “confirm” the effect. Well, here you have some of the facts scientist know from a whole variety of studies.
- Visualization in meditation creates emotional and physical responses in the body. Just like if you were experiencing the scenes for real.
- Increases the immune functions of the body
- You can shape and mold the neurons in the brain by using meditation
- It reduces pain in the body
- Decreases Inflammation, which would have caused diseases over time
- Meditation produces happiness and positive emotions in the body
- Decreases depression and anxiety
- Reduces stress in the body
- Develops higher emotional intelligence and makes you more compassionate
- Improves your self-control
- Makes you more productive with better focus and attention
- Improves your memory
I think it’s important to know about these known effects. So for those that are new to these thoughts on doing self-healing by focusing on your inner life, know that it’s not just an exotic, mystical ritual. For me, it’s an important part of my My 7 Rules on how to strengthen your mind, body, and soul.
When it comes to using meditation for anxiety, the effect is very positive and beneficial. Here’s an interesting article on how to use guided meditation for anxiety.
What you should think about and consider first
Before you dive into the inner matrix of the brain and open up the landscape of untamed thoughts looking at glowing clouds and play with the unicorns, there are a few things you should consider and also be aware of before you sit down in peace.
Since you want to find better methods to have a good sleep and want to use meditation before you go to bed, don’t stuff yourself with coffee. It’s usually a bad idea.
Don’t eat heavy foods or big meals before bed
You might wonder if eating before bedtime is bad. It can be. The most well-known myth or common knowledge about eating before bed is that it’s bad for you. But some places you can read that it’s good for you. I will share my comments on that, so you have something to consider before we get started.
I often eat late, even in the middle of the night sometimes. I don’t care. Of course, I don’t have an issue with my weight. But I’m having my sleep in mind when I mention this. What I would recommend is this:
- Eat before bedtime, but choose very light products. And with less sugar. It’s to comfort yourself and not having a nagging hungry stomach.
- I recommend not eating meat; it takes a lot of energy to digest. And, meat has a very low vibrational energy.
- Have a small glass of water. We dry up at night. But don’t pour in, just to have you wake up for peeing like a horse at night!
My experience, and I know for many others, is that after you eat a small meal before bedtime, you will calm down. The other way around would be to go to bed hungry, and that will just make it worse. A lot of people also get irritated and short-fused when they are hungry. Not a state to be in before meditation or sleep.
Another thing is that after eating, many people get a little drowsy since the digestive system kicks in. A nice state to be in for meditation. But again, don’t eat like it’s Christmas.
Empty your mind in meditation? Forget about it!
So let’s be real about this. Most people that start out with meditation for the first time give up. If you have tried, have you concluded with the following?
- My brain is a drama queen going crazy
- I can’t stop thinking
- All kinds of weird thoughts keep coming up and disturbs my mediation
- I can’t focus on my breath
- I get to easily distracted; it’s not for me
Oh yeah, and all the other comments. I have heard a lot. You know what?
Good! You’re normal, and this is precisely why we are doing some kind of meditation practice that will fit you. To calm the mind down.
Don’t forget the default state of constant input
Why do people want to do meditation? And why do you think the results from scientists are so profound with the different effects it has both physically, mentally and emotionally?
This is because most humans are living such a brutally hectic life for the body and mind, with an almost constant flow of inputs that it becomes the default state of the brain.
It can also be other causes for having a “busy mind.” Personal issues, troubles in life, stress, and expectations. Too much work (whistle… )
Taming that wild horse is hard. Expect that. So, give it time. Calming the mind is a process over time, so don’t expect to fall into a magical out of body experience by just having a one-time romantic evening burning candles and chasing rainbows mindfully.
Give it time and thoughts come what may
This is one of my most important tips when you start out with your meditation practice. Your flow of thoughts, the brains activity and the firing of neurons WILL keep happening.
So the essential tip is NEVER to give up, spend the time and visualize that you are slowly and gradually landing a plain. You shouldn’t fight it. Never say you “will fight your thoughts.” It’s a mindset of war and battle, and it’s not what meditation is about.
Let it be, take your time. Unfocus and refocus. Go out and back in.
How to do meditation for sleep -two methods
I’m hoping for you to do two things. 1: Try out this tonight, and 2: do the same tomorrow and for one year from now on.
Let’s prepare for the session.
Slow down for the evening. That also means a gradual decrease of input in most forms. Including light. Especially computer, TV, and cell phone light. Darkness triggers our sleep cycles. And the light is supposed to wake us up in the morning. (as a simple explanation)
Again, consider your mind as an airplane. You HAVE to maintain it. But you can’t do it in the air. Please land it first, tax it into the right location, slow it down and stop.
Now choose between one of the two methods. Of course, there a lot of ways and practices within meditation, but I wanted to simplify and show you these two techniques I have been using myself.
Sleep meditation methods – No1, using sound
We will use sound for this method. And in two different ways. In the next method, we will not use any sound, just focus on the breathing.
There are two ways of using a sound that I find wonderful. (I prefer sound) Below I’m proving a good sleep meditation soundtrack you can quickly find on YouTube.
Drowsing static sound called “white noise.”
The first way of using sound is by playing ONE simple and static sound file called “white noise.” You might have heard this before. You most likely have at some point while listening to the radio without connection, just static sound. Or maybe having a fan blowing just nearby, or a low monotonous sound of the wind in the trees.
I remember when I was a kid at around 12. Down in the basement, I had an Adax heater with a fan running at night. And I noticed over time that during the colder winter days when I had the fan running, I would fall asleep like a kid by having it blowing by my bedside.
[tweet_box] “Try #sleep #meditation using white noise: ”[/tweet_box]
Why is it called “white noise”? You know what the color white is? It’s a full blend of all the different colors blended. Red, green and blue creates white when all blended together. It’s the same for “white noise. Red, green and blue creates white when all blended . It’s the same for “white noise”. It’s a blend of the whole sound spectrum we can hear, mixed into one sound file.
The effect of this kind of sound input for the brain, because of this steady, monotonous frequency is a calming and settling feeling.
Sit down comfortably, close your eyes and play white noise for at least 30min. This is so that you will have at least enough time to get into the “zone.” But also not too long to make this unbearable if you struggle with sitting still. You don’t have to spend the whole 30min, but ten would be good. If you do this every day, things will change.
Thoughts will come and go. And if you feel it turns wild in your head, open your eyes, refocus and get back to it. Don’t fight it, let them be.
Try one of these, even on headphones as long as they are comfortable to wear. Just don’t sit and stare at the YouTube video.
Using music without lyrics
Music is vibration. And it comes in ALL different colors and flavors. Music affects the human body and mind. It’s the sound frequency and vibration delivering this effect.
Two short stories about sound vibration
The crystal bowl – A cool incident I remember a few years, on one of my trips to England, is when we met Peter Sterling in a field of crops. There was a group of people sitting down in the field having a talk, and Peter was there. He plays different instruments, and that day he brought a huge crystal bowl. He went on to a session of wind-harp, and right after pulled out the huge crystal bowl.
I was amazed when he started to stroke the edges of it and the sound that began ringing. He walked slowly among the group, and suddenly he lowered the bowl down nearby the head to one of the guys there. The guy sitting on the ground and his immediate response were almost like being in shock like he saw a ghost. He started laughing and almost cried. That sound went straight through his body and energized something.
A Tibetan singing bowl – Another touching moment I have seen is when I guy I know tried out a Tibetan “singing” bowl and created this high pitched ringing sound. A girl was standing nearby, not so very much into anything “mystical” or stuff like rubbing an empty metal bowl to create special effects on her. But he said to her: -“let me try this on you.”
He strokes the bowl making a high pitched beautiful sound, and moved it up and down her body. I have never seen this before, but after a few moments, the girl literally broke down, started crying and fell to the floor.
I know this girl. She doesn’t want to talk about this incident.
NOW, let’s move on – to the next method where we will use sound for meditation. As I said, I prefer music when I have my sessions in the evening. You have to decide what you would prefer. If you wanna slow down, get tired and drowse off, I think you will be better off with the “white noise” sound, or nothing at all.
For my part, I often use mediation for visualizing. Not just to calm down. That’s why I use a defined playlist on Spotify.
Anyway, I recommend NOT using any music with lyrics. The words, whatever meaning and the analytical part of the brain should not be aroused to want to focus on the lyrics.
Music creates emotion, so I recommend some kind of music that feels soothing, calming and maybe takes you off to another reality. Using the right kind of music can also function as having a partly guided meditation since it can create emotion and images. One type of “music” you can use is listening to something such natural as nature sounds.
This can be either simple forest sounds where you hear the wind, the birds and can really feel the nature around you. Running water, rain or the ocean is something that is very calming for many of us. These natural elements have an effect on us for a reason I believe.
Here I’m providing you with just a few examples of what I use:
- Thom Brennan track, “Submerge” on YouTube – the kind of floating and spacey music I like.
- Grounded by Sacred Earth on YouTube -having a nice deep monotonous background tone.
You will for sure find other suggestions as soon as you land on YouTube. For me, I find the same two tracks on Spotify.
Sleep meditation methods – No2, just stillness
In this second method for doing meditation for sleep is by doing the total opposite. By just being still and not feed the brain with sound. Not everybody likes this method because it becomes too quiet. I would say that you should still consider this over time anyway.
Handling the stillness would be part of your practice in itself, and is, in fact, good for you. You can do it in short sessions, like 5 to 10 minutes.
The way we will do this mediation is almost like the first method. Some recommended notes that also goes for all meditations:
- Sit upright, but comfortable
- Don’t lie down, if it’s the effect of the meditation you want. Not just dipping off right away.
- Don’t be stuffed with food or be hungry as a lion. Just be neutral
- Wear loose and comfortable clothes. Makes it also easy to just jump into bed right after your session
Let’s close our eyes. We do this for two simple reasons:
- Block that input channel for the brain
- It makes our focus inward. A huge factor in the whole meditation process
Now we will spend mind-power to focus on something. It’s our breathing. Damn, this is SO underrated. If you only knew the effect and importance of such an obvious bodily reflex.
First of all, by choosing to focus on your breathing rhythms, we occupy the brain on a specific focal point instead of being in default, an open state where thoughts more easily can pop up. It’s like sitting in a dark room just staring at a candlelight and study it’s motion effect and movements of the burning flame.
The other reason is that we will practice BETTER breathing in a more deep and rich way. If you have ever thought of having an “experience” during meditation, focus on the breathing CAN be one way to feel some kind of ecstatic sensation in the body.
So now, enjoy the stillness by just being you. If you can, breathe in through your nose and hold for 3-4 seconds before breathing slowly out through your mouth. Do this for the first minute, and slowly find a good rhythm and a normal pattern.
Do you breathe deep? That means down into your belly and slowly out.
You know that if you are stressed over a long period of time, what do you think is one of the reasons we get “dis-ease” in our bodies? Among other things, it’s because stress makes our breathing more shallow and short-breathed and will over time give an effect of having low oxygen levels.
Being able to have the peace of breathing in a deep, steady and controlled manner is a VERY good skill and will benefit you more than you know as long as you continue with it. Practice this every day, even while driving or out walking. And start to oxygenize your body in a more rich way.
From today, make one of these methods as part of your lifestyle. THAT’s when the changes start to be noticeable.
Additional tools and methods
I mentioned at the beginning of this article that there are A LOT of methods and ways of doing meditation. And for different reasons. What’s your goal by having this as part of your lifestyle?
I will probably write another article later about different methods of meditation. Like for changing your mindset and building strong dream manifesting thought forms.
Whatever method you choose above I would always recommend focusing on the breathing as much as you can. Because most people need it anyway. It’s good for you, and it will only become a good habit to have anyway.
There is one App I would recommend for you. It’s called Ambient. You will find A LOT of different sounds in all variations for the purpose of having sound to mediation. You will find both white noise, nature sounds and natural elements in a whole variety of collections.
Don’t forget to consider to try out if you have a fan you can put in the room. Some people do that.
And, as for a last and most important tip. If you want to reach a destination, the only way to fail is to stop walking. Keep doing with your meditation practice, that’s when the changes happen.
If you have an issue with sleeping, I hope that this article gave you something new to try out. Share it with a friend; I would like to have more eyes on these tips.
Now slowly land your plane, find peace and listen to your breath or some soothing sounds bringing you a sleepy state of mind.