Insomnia can be difficult to contend with, especially when you tried everything from cutting out substances to setting a regular routine, only to no avail. But there’s still hope.
If you haven’t had any luck trying to fall asleep normally, try this out instead:
1. Turn off the lights
Artificial lighting throws off your body’s natural circadian rhythm, so it’s important to expose yourself to natural daylight as much as possible and reduce your sources of artificial lighting as the day ends.
This improves your chances of having your natural rhythm kick in again, and you’ll find yourself feeling tired and sleepy.
2. Get the right amount of exercise at the right time
Before you drag yourself to the gym, keep in mind that this doesn’t mean running a marathon or lifting weights. Simple aerobic exercises, such as walking or riding a bike, can be good for improving your chances of getting sleep.
3. Use lavender
If you’re not already familiar with essential oils or fragrances, lavender’s calming properties can help you unwind and fall asleep after a long day. Simply place a small amount and dilute it with water before switching on the diffuser.
You can also apply it as an oil, as it provides nutrients such as vitamin A, calcium, and iron, and even reduces anxiety and fatigue.
4. Enjoy a long shower
If you’re feeling particularly tense about not being able to get some sleep no matter how hard you try, you might benefit from taking a relaxing shower.
Our bodies’ circadian rhythms are not just sensitive to light, but are also sensitive to temperature. This means that our internal clocks start to signal our brains that it’s time to rest when it gets cold. Your breathing slows down and your heart rate drops as a result.
5. Drink tea
While you should absolutely avoid any sources of caffeine when you already have trouble getting the shut-eye you need, there’s no problem enjoying a cup of tea to wind down after a long day.
6. Practice deep breathing exercises
This will come in handy if you find that you have anxiety or a lot of racing thoughts keeping you awake even when you want to fall asleep.
While it may seem difficult at first, it’s important that you focus on your breathing. Your mind will eventually clear itself after a while and you will be able to get some rest more easily.
So the next time you really want to fall asleep but can’t, forget the sleeping pill – simply do the following, let yourself unwind, and drift off gently until you close your eyes.