All of us experience sleep difficulties at some point in our lives. There are times when you go to bed tired, but your mind would start wandering, worrying, thinking, and you just cannot sleep. You spend (waste) hours staring at the ceiling even when you are mostly rushing throughout the day for the paucity of the valuable resource that is time. For some people, the problem doesn’t end here. They experience frequent arousals and disturbing dreams. While dreaming is quite normal and even necessary, too much dreaming makes sure that you do not feel rested in the morning.
Whether you are experiencing insomnia or just want to improve your sleep quality, guided sleep meditation can help you achieve that goal. Its benefits don’t end there. Sleep mediation that uses music for relaxation is a scientifically proven way to slow down the mind and has countless mental benefits. It is also known to reduce stress, anxiety, and counter depression tendencies.
What is sleep meditation
Sleep meditation involves listening to an audio of meditation music for 45-50 mins just before sleep. This meditation music relaxes your mind to a state where your body is in sleep mode, but you are mentally awake. It’s a state between sleep and wakefulness.
Sleep meditation is fundamentally different from the state of sleep. When you are sleeping, your conscious mind is asleep and resting, while the subconscious mind is awake and alert to take care of all bodily functions. In the normal sleep state, the subconscious takes control of the body. The opposite happens during sleep meditation. The meditation music relaxes the body and slows down the breathing rate, while the conscious mind is in control and fully aware of this relaxation. This prepares your body and the mind for a sound sleep. In this way, sleep meditation is a preparation for normal sleep.
Benefits of sleep meditation
Listening to meditation music before sleeping has some wonderful benefits for mental health.
1. Improves sleep
Relaxation before sleep can make you fall asleep faster and improve the quality of sleep. When you listen to calming meditation music, your mind slowly clears itself from negative thoughts and prepares for rest. This keeps worrying thoughts at bay and makes it easier to fall asleep. As your breathing rate slowed down even before you fell asleep, your body takes less time to go into non-rapid eye movement sleep or deep sleep.
2. Reduces stress and anxiety
Any practice that allows you to relax can reduce stress levels. Listening to meditation music before bed also promotes mindfulness, that is the art of living in the present moment. Mindfulness is known to strengthen the mind against stress and depression tendencies. Besides, a night of sound sleep can control cortisol production even during the daytime.
3. Improves immune function
Believe it or not, good sleep is the key to good health. Sound sleep can improve immune function, and since sleep meditation helps you sleep longer and better, it’s also good for boosting immunity against common cold and allergies.
4. No more snooze button
Do you overuse that snooze button in your alarm clock? The reason for this might be more than mere laziness. Having difficulty in waking up is a sign that you are not adequately rested and had a short sleep or poor sleep. A night of sound and restful sleep can make it easier for you to wake up on time.
While meditation music has a profound impact on improving sleep quality, it’s not a way to force yourself to sleep. It cannot make you sleep whenever you like. Just like your morning meditation, you need to practice sleep meditation regularly and consistently to reap its benefits