The Best Secrets to Rest Better Tonight!
When your alarm goes off, you can’t help but be exhausted. In fact, you’d give anything for 30 more minutes of sleep. Does this sound familiar? Then why is it that when you go to rest your head on the pillow that your adrenaline starts flowing, and your mind starts racing while you are tossing and turning? For most of us, it is anxiety that is keeping us up at night. So much so that almost 9 million Americans use sleeping medication nightly. Our anxiety starts to increase when our world starts to slow down. Read 5 things you can do to rest better tonight.
1. Lower your anxiety baseline. Think about it, do you really think that anxiety is fine during the day, but just pops up at night? No, we are just too busy during the day to notice all the symptoms. Self-care is the number one thing that you can do to lower your overall anxiety. Whether it be yoga, massages, or regular nights with friends, self-care is a must to lower your overall anxiety levels.
2. Journaling is one of the best things to lower anxiety at night. When we rest our heads, we often have so many thoughts spinning in our head. Sometimes, unknowingly to us, we keep the thoughts going because we fear we will forget them in the morning. When we journal what we are thinking and feeling, it gives us an instant release and permission to shut our brain down.
3. One of my favorite imagery exercises to do is to imagine all my thoughts. Then, I imagine putting those thoughts in a box. That box can be as big or small as I want it to be-it is my box. Once I put those thoughts in the box, I tell myself “those thoughts and worries are in a safe spot right now. I will come back to them when I’m ready.” It sounds so simple, but it is so powerful.
4. Progressive muscle relaxation is a research proven technique to relax the body. The premise is that we hold tension in our body without realizing it. The exercise has us tighten then release each muscle for 5 seconds. This allows us to release all the tension in the body and relax the body enough to prepare for sleep.
5. One of the most important things we can do is prepare the body for sleep before we want to be asleep. Turn off your phone, screens and step away from work. Try reading a book, taking a bubble bath, or something else that is relaxing 30 minutes before you want to sleep.
Life can be stressful. Sometimes it feels like we carry so much all by ourselves. When it feels too heavy, counseling can often help. At Heights Family Counseling, we believe in a compassionate, non-judgement approach. Our goal is to journey alongside each person to help them recognize their own strengths and resiliency in order to foster a more meaningful and authentic life.
Written by Amy Rollo, M.A., LSSP, LPC-S
Amy Rollo is a Licensed Professional Counselor Supervisor and owner of Heights Family Counseling. Amy has been practicing for fifteen years. She has doctoral level training in the areas of child and adolescent counseling, marriage and family therapy, and adult counseling. Amy Rollo provides counseling and evaluation services in the Houston Heights and surrounding areas. Amy’s goal in counseling is to journey with her clients in order to foster positive changes and growth in their lives. Read more about Amy's counseling style by visiting www.heightsfamilycounseling.com