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Creating A Peaceful Place to Sleep

Here are some simple tips from lifestyle blog Geoffrey & Grace to help you create a calming sleeping environment.

In order to get a peaceful night's sleep, it's important to have a calm sleeping area. Here are a few simple changes I made to my bedroom and night-time routine to help myself wake up feeling refreshed and well rested.

Until recently the area by my bed was covered in clutter. Magazines, paperwork and some camera lenses had somehow found a home on the chiffonier in our bedroom. There wasn't a beside lamp, leaving me to choose from either the main light or darkness. We moved into our house a little over a year ago and this space always was bottom of the to-do list. With the start of the new year, it seemed like a great time to tackle this problem area!

Here's what it looked like before:

© Geoffrey & Grace
© Geoffrey & Grace

Leave Your Phone Downstairs

Leaving my mobile phone downstairs is a great way to help me switch off completely. That way I'm not tempted to check any emails or my favourite social network before my head hits the pillow.

Stay Hydrated

I always have a glass of fresh water on my bedside table, so if I'm thirsty right before bed or during the night, I don't have to get up.

Keep it Green

I'll put fresh flowers by the bed whenever possible; they help the space feel more welcoming.

Try Writing in a Gratitude Journal

I've just started a gratitude journal, in which I write down three things to be thankful for every day. Even on the really bad days you can find simple joys. By thinking about the good stuff and acknowledging what you are grateful for, you can end the day with a happy heart and a positive thought. Now that the clutter is gone, there is space for the notebook right by the bed. (You can read more about 'using gratitude to fix a bad attitude' over on my blog).

Try Meditation

Sometimes I will do a few straightforward stretches before 'lights out', and I also like to do a daily meditation.

Even a simple three-minute meditation is a great way to clear and calm the mind before sleep. We are often so busy during the day, whizzing from one thing to the next, that we barely have time to take a breath, let alone allow our mind be still and quiet. If you would like to try a little meditation before you go to sleep, all it requires is that you sit with a bit of patience and a willingness to try.

There are many routes into meditation and various techniques, but this is what I currently do just before bed:

Duration: 3 minutes building to 31 minutes.

Step One:

Sit in 'easy pose' with your legs crossed and your thumb and first finger touching one another (this position is called Gyan Mudra). You can also sit in 'rock pose' (on your knees). The most important things to remember are that you are comfortable and that the spine is as straight as possible.

Step Two:

© Geoffrey & Grace

Close the eyes and draw your focus to your third eye, or the area just between your eyebrows and up slightly. Then simply begin by watching your breath—letting your tummy expand with the inhale and your breath gently fall away with the exhale.

Step Three:

Try to empty your mind of all that has happened during the day. Thoughts will float into your consciousness but just let them pass. Try to relax and let go of any associated stress or emotion that arises. With the slowing of your breath, your mind should feel calmer and your body will follow suit. You may become aware that you are holding tension in a specific area of your body. Commonplace areas are the shoulders, neck and jaw. As you become aware of any tension, try to release and relax with your exhale.

Step Four:

To end, take three deep breaths and stretch your arms over your head.

Have a great night's sleep!

© Geoffrey & Grace