We’ve all been there before: You spend what seems like hours trying to fall asleep, tossing and turning and growing increasingly frustrated. You look at the clock and realize it’s three in the morning, meaning you only have a few more hours to sleep before it’s time to get up to go to work. No matter what you do, you just can’t seem to get yourself to the point of relaxation you need. It might be the worst feeling in the world. If that sounds familiar to you, don’t fret: We’ve got some interesting ways to get yourself relaxed and ready for sleep, so you never have to go through that scenario again. From tongue techniques to deep stretching to intense deep breathing exercises, this is how you prepare your body and mind for a full night of uninterrupted, gloriously refreshing sleep. Try them tonight — and don’t forget to thank us tomorrow.Focus your mind and body on taking slow, deep breaths. This will help reduce your heart rate and blood pressure.
Deep breathing also allows the parasympathetic system (which is responsible for your ability to relax) to override your sympathetic system (which controls your automatic stress response).
According to Dr. Andrew Weil, you should sit up in bed with your back straight, and press the tip of your tongue on the roof of your mouth right behind your front teeth. Maintaining that position, close your mouth and inhale through your nose for four counts, hold that breath for seven counts, and then exhale through your mouth around your tongue for eight counts. Repeat this pattern until you have completed four full breaths.
Read this set of instructions carefully and try it for yourself.
Try connecting with the rise and fall of the breath, and noticing where you feel that breath move within the body, letting go of anything negative you might feel.
As you can see, it helps with air flow and getting that oxygen to your lungs and bloodstream.
Kapalbhati breathing requires focusing 100 percent of one’s energy on the breath. Try it out by sitting in a kneeling position with your back straight and hands resting on your knees.
Breathe in through your nose and exhale powerfully through your mouth by contracting your abdominal muscles in short, measured bursts.
And ultimately, it will relax you.
By alternating between each nostril for the inhale and exhale, the body and mind are said to achieve a sense of balance and neutrality. Think of your nostrils as a yin and yang situation.
Close off the left nostril with the right ring finger to inhale. Then close off the right nostril with the right thumb to exhale. Keep your eyes closed throughout the exercise.
Here’s how it’s done: Lie down in bed on your back, inhale for three seconds, exhale for six seconds and repeat until you’ve fallen asleep.
As you pay more attention to your breath, everything else seems to fall away.
These methods have proven successful time and time again.
When it doesn’t go well the first time around, shake it off and try again. Eventually, you’ll drift off to sleep.