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Do you ever get bombarded with annoying thoughts that keep you up at night?
It’s even more frustrating when you’re exhausted but your brain is so active.
It’s sometimes fun to just let your mind go, but it does absolutely nothing to help you go to sleep.
So, what can you do about it?
You can turn to guided meditation for sleep!
In Deep Slumber Guide
Yeah, this is not THAT guide!
Playing such an exciting game like World of Warcraft’s “In Deep Slumber” keeps gamers awake long after they should sleeping!
To all the sleep-deprived gamers out there, try out guided meditation and incorporate some of the tips below for a better night’s sleep!
Fully charged, your chances of beating the other guy can be THAT much higher!
Why is Meditation Important
Meditation has a beneficial effect on sleep because it helps harmonize the body and mind.
It produces “relaxation response” – a physical and mental state that is conducive for sleeping.
More than just that, it also helps with:
- Better management of stress, anxiety and depression
- Increased immunity
- Lowered blood pressure
- Improved happiness and general well-being
- Longer attention span
- Improved memory
Dr. Herbert Benson, the director of the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine, says that mindfulness meditation is one of the techniques that trigger this state.
He recommends meditating for 20~ minutes before bed to counteract stress, relieve sleep disorders (like insomnia) and enter a zen-like calm.
3 Things to do Before You Meditate
Now, before you try sleep meditation, consider these things first:
1. Solve Physical Problems
- Pain and breathlessness may interfere with sleep, so see your doctor for accurate diagnosis and treatment.
- Avoiding alcohol, caffeine, and other stimulants will make it easier for you to sleep. You may drink coffee or alcohol during the day, but it’s probably best to cut it off after lunch.
- Make your sleeping environment as comfortable as possible.
- Is your bed hard to sleep on? Change it.
- Is it dark enough for you to sleep? Close the blinds and put on a sleep mask.
- The sleeping cycle is affected by the amount of light in the surroundings. This includes the glow of electronic devices, so avoid looking at your gadgets at least 1 hour before bed.
2. Establish Routines
- Establishing a routine will help your brain expect when to sleep and when to wake up.Then, slowly this can turn into a habit where you won’t even need an alarm anymore.
The trick is…to get up as soon as you hear the alarm.
Do not think about how cozy your warm bed is. Yes, I know that’s hard, but just get up and go！
SAVVY TIP: you probably want to put your alarm far away from the bed so you have to get up to turn it off. Also, try setting the alarm tone LOUD and not a tune that you particularly enjoy.
- Avoid prolonged napping – that’s anything longer than 20 minutes.
You might ruin your sleeping pattern and develop “sleep inertia” that causes tiredness and grogginess.
3. Control Your Thoughts
Your thoughts have a great influence on your emotions and behavior.
This includes your sleep quality.
Watch your internal dialogue to see if it’s preventing you from resting.
- What are your beliefs about sleep?
- Do you accept it or do you think it’s getting in the way of work?
- Do you see it as a challenge that you often fail at?
Drop these unhelpful thoughts and cut out negative self-talk!
Worried about something?
- Write down your worries instead. Beside each, note when and how you can deal with it.
- Taking action is what will make you feel better about these worries, but not right before bed.
- Remember to seek professional help if you experience this for a prolonged period of time.
Anxiety can lead to sleeping disorders!
Christian Guided Meditation
There are meditations that are specifically created for Christians. And who wouldn’t want to be able to celebrate their faith even during their slumber?!
Two of the most popular Sleep Meditation for Christian YouTube channels are:
Guided Bible Sleep Meditation by Abide
Alone With God by DappyTKeys Piano Worship
For those who get distracted by too many words, peaceful music may be a better option.
This YouTube channel from DappyTKeys Piano Worship is filled with 3 hours of instrumental worship music that relaxes you.
It’s actually one of my favorites!
Meditation Sleep Music
There is a LOT of serene music that will put you in a meditative state, and eventually lull you into sleep. Some with soothing imagery as well!
Check out our top picks for meditation sleep music here:
Yellow Brick Cinema
This music-only YouTube channel showcases tranquil music that relaxes you after a stressful day!
They claim that their soft instrumental music is mixed with binaural beats (Delta and Theta waves) to encourage relaxation and deep sleep.
They said their music is most popular for studying and focusing.
Sleep Easy Relax
Another channel worth checking out. They are based in Australia and made their own original peaceful healing music.
Again, all soft instrumental music, no voices. Just listen and drift off to sleep – just what you needed after a hectic day at the office!
UCLA Guided Meditation
Did you know that UCLA has a meditation podcast, mindfulness app, and a free guided meditation online course?!
Introduction to Mindfulness Meditation (Mini) Course
Recorded by Diana Winston, the Director of Mindfulness Education at UCLA, this meditation course is available in both English and Spanish.
The English version has 8 audio sessions (71 minutes) while the Spanish version only has 4 audio sessions (36 minutes).
Not sure why there is or what the difference is between the two languages, but it’s free!
UCLA Mindful App
This is where you can get access to their mini-course (and their podcast!) right on your phone.
Available for both Android and iOS devices. Download the free app here!
Guided Meditation Podcast
Meditation at the Hammer Podcast
Every Thursday since June 2012, there’s a free, drop-in session for a guided meditation that lasts about 30 minutes.
It’s hosted by Meditation Awareness Research Center (MARC) at UCLA’s Hammer Museum and is recorded and uploaded onto their podcast.
There’s a new theme each week, and the format includes opening comments, guided meditation, silent practice time, then closing comments.
It’s typically led by Diana Winston with some guest leaders.
You can listen to the host, Otis Gray, read you to sleep in his low (baritone) voice. Anything from old books to poetry to novellas that can put you to bed.
Available on Player FM, Spotify and Apple Podcast, check out his sleep sessions here!
Meditation Vacation by Christian Thomas
A normal guy from the UK, who used guided meditation to get him through a tough stage in his life, and now he’s paying it forward for making his own guided meditation for sleep videos.
He has 112,000+ subscribers on YouTube with over 15 million views on his channel collectively, while this particular video has >2 million views on its own!
Guided Meditation for Teens
Teen angst is a real thing! And they need their sleep even more as they go through puberty.
New Horizon – Meditation & Sleep Stories
This guided meditation is for teenagers who are suffering from stress and anxiety in the form of different stories.
Play this as they are falling asleep and see if it helps them be less moody!
Here’s a quick and easy 8-minute meditation exercise for your teen.
Why is it important for them to learn how to meditate at such a young age?
Well, because “research suggests [cultivate mindfulness will help them] develop resilience, improve executive function and social and emotional skills that allow them to steer themselves when the time comes.”
Get them in the habit early on, so it’s like second nature to them. This is a life skill that will serve them time and time again.
It’s a way to calm down, relax the mind and stay positive. It reduces anxiety and gives them back their emotional balance.
It’s potentially the second greatest gift you can give them…after giving them the gift of life, of course!
Everyone is different, so this may not work as well for you as it did for me.
If it doesn’t, no harm, no foul.
Go ahead! Give it try and let me know what you think