1. Yoga to sleep better tonight
Practice the free simple super sleep sequence – it takes 10 minutes or so before bed, and improves your ability to get to sleep and the quality of your sleep once you drop off. If you haven’t already signed up to receive this, do so here.
It starts by activating a calm breath and stretching the spinal nerves. It then continues to grounding poses, and releases tension in the ribcage and torso, initiating the relaxed body posture that allows the brain to change from ‘tension and stress’ to ‘rest and sleep’ mode.
2. Embrace the 3.00pm slump
Practice powering down when you’re tired! You’ll retrain your brain and body to follow the tiredness cue with rest or sleep rather than a stress response.
Sit comfortably, close your eyes, and focus on the sensation (temperature, texture, feeling) of the breath inside your nose. Don’t try to control your breath but observe it. Allow thoughts to pop up and returning simply and without strain to your breath. Do this for 10 minutes every afternoon, and it not only gets easier but more effective as you are conditioned to respond to the rest time. This breath meditation instead of a coffee or chocolate bar boosts your energy and productivity sustainably, so you actually sleep better at night.
3. Mop up after a bad night’s sleep?
To sweep away a rocky night’s sleep, do this restorative yoga pose for 10 minutes before starting your day:
Use an ambient track, like the ones on Moby’s free download ‘Sleep.Rest’. Put your legs up on a chair, with the shins resting on the seat. Make sure your lower back has a natural curve, and adjust yourself so that the crease where your legs meet your torso is relaxed. Allow your palms to face upwards and relax your arms by the sides of your hips whilst your head rests back on the floor. This gentle inversion is both deeply relaxing and restoring, ‘putting energy back on the grid’ when you feel depleted.
This post first appeared on the Triyoga blog.