“Relaxation techniques provide substantial improvement in sleep quality.” John L. Eickholt, MD
Getting relaxed helps prepare the mind and body for sleep, setting the stage for the next step. It is absolutely essential to shut down the brain prior to getting into bed, and that begins with relaxation.
If your brain is still running at bedtime, it can lead to staying up too late, lying in bed awake, waking in the night, difficulty returning to sleep, waking too early, or not feeling rested despite eight (or more) total hours of sleep.
How do you know if your brain had been turned off? Ask yourself these questions:
- How often do I go to bed thinking about the events of the day?
- How often do I go to bed feeling like I wasn’t able to accomplish enough during the day?
- How often do I go to bed thinking about what I must get done tomorrow?
- Do I ever stay up too late in an attempt to “tire myself out?”
- Does my bedtime get later throughout the week?
- Do I go to bed feeling excited or nervous? (Yes, even GOOD things can have BAD effects!)
- Does the thought of my bed lead to stress or negative thoughts?
Just ONE of these questions could serve as a “red flag” that relaxation may be in order.
Many people find it helpful to listen to audio recordings as a way to learn these techniques. Guided relaxation is a great way to get started if you are unable to get relaxed on your own.
If you’re looking for a little extra help along the way, we’re here for you! The best way to learn relaxation techniques is with a health coach in a structured program. One-on-one coaching provides guidance tailored to individual needs, and a good, structured program includes vital, specific content so that no stone is left unturned.
What do you think? Have you tried relaxation throughout the day or before bed? How did it go?