Meditation doesn’t have to be an elaborate ritual. Start meditating in bed before your head hits the pillow, and you can reap the many health benefits that meditation has to offer.
What keeps you up at night?
It’s not an outlandish claim to say that there are more sleep-deprived individuals in our world today than at any other time in history. The combination of a restless culture with more blue-light radiation than ever from our phone screens is inevitably leading to a decline in sleep hygiene. I see so many examples of individuals whose nightly routines consist of the following:
- Get off work from staring at a computer all day
- Grab something to eat
- Scroll social media/binge-watch TV for hours
- Go to bed
If this sounds like your routine, you may be cutting into quality sleep! Don’t worry, though. This article will give you the information you need to take action so you can:
- Fall asleep faster
- Get better sleep
- Reduce stress
By incorporating a short meditation session before bedtime, you can take advantage of SEVERAL health benefits. But, we’ll get more into the why later. Let’s dive into the how so you can jump in and take action.
How can beginners meditate in bed?
When just starting out, it is important to establish a consistent meditation routine. Finding a meditation routine that works for you might take some experimentation.
Don’t worry about finding your perfect routine right away! This will take time, and bed meditation is a great starting place. Whether you’ve never meditated before or you are a seasoned meditation mercenary, you can benefit from a nightly bedtime meditation ritual.
Choose the right place to meditate
If you are absolutely, 100% against meditating in bed, well, fine. Bedtime meditation doesn’t have to be done in bed.
But, we do feel that meditating in your bed is a great way to prime yourself for a good night’s rest. While there are no studies that say meditating in bed is better than meditating elsewhere, we feel that it allows you to seamlessly transition from a relaxing meditation session straight to a restful night of sleep.
Plus, if you happen to fall asleep during your meditation practice, you don’t need to move – you’re already in bed!
Best Ways to Practice Sleep Meditation Before Bed
Here, we’ll walk through a few great ways to meditate in bed. Keep yourself open to trying out at least a couple of these to figure out what works best for you.
Body Scan Meditation
Body scan meditation is a quick, easy, and beginner-friendly meditation technique that can immediately result in higher sleep quality. Rebekkah Waterbury, a Reiki Expert from MetaSpirituals, describes body scan meditation as “a relaxation technique that doubles as a great form of mindfulness meditation. This technique incorporates physical mindfulness and can be seamlessly integrated into a holistic nighttime ritual, benefiting beginners and seasoned spiritual experts alike.”
To perform this meditation, lay in a comfortable position, and bring your attention to your feet. From here, you are going to slowly “scan” up your body, working your way up to your head. As you scan the different areas of your body, focus on how they feel.
Are they warm? Cold? Maybe a slight pain from a long day at work, or a workout? Bringing focus and attention to these feelings is a great way to practice mindfulness. One or two body scans before bed, and you will experience restful sleep in no time at all.
Progressive Muscle Relaxation Meditation
Progressive muscle relaxation is similar to body scanning, but instead of passively observing each muscle group as you scan up the body, tense your muscles for 5-10 seconds before relaxing them. Breathe deeply as you tense and relax the muscles, and give yourself 15-20 seconds of muscle relaxation before moving on to the next muscle group.
Many people picture progressive muscle relaxation as a more intense form of body scan meditation. It is known to help curb insomnia and is a great way to bring your attention to the present moment.
Progressive muscle relaxation is most effective if you lie down in bed, as sitting up can prevent you from completely relaxing your muscles after tensing them.
I personally save this meditation for when I am feeling anxiety, or there are distractions present in my life that will keep me from falling asleep at night. This is a great way to calm down and can help to curb any sleep problems you may experience.
Guided meditations are a great way to get your feet wet with bedtime meditation. A quick Google search will be able to find you a number of guided meditations that will suit your needs. There are several apps that have pre-recorded guided meditations, but even a simple YouTube video can suffice.
Guided sleep meditations generally employ a number of different techniques.
Whether you want your guided meditation to walk you through a body scan, or you are seeking another form of mindfulness, a well-thought-out guided meditation can have you sound asleep in just a few minutes.
If you are looking for a little help on how to meditate before bed, guided meditation may be just what you’re looking for.
Mindful Breathing Meditation
Mindful breathing meditation is a great way to incorporate mindfulness into your nighttime routine. This time, instead of focusing on your body parts, your focus should be on your breath. As you lie in bed, your only thought should be on your breathing.
While lying there, breathe slowly, and try to focus more on belly breathing as opposed to more labored chest breathing. Mindful breathing meditation helps to bring mindfulness to the present moment and can accelerate your sleep tenfold.
Focus on breath awareness
It is very important to develop breath awareness, and not just as a form of meditation. Humans take on average 20,000 breaths a day, and oftentimes we neglect our body and breathing to a point where we may add stress to ourselves.
Take a few minutes before you go to bed to relax, breathe slowly, and focus on how your body feels as you inhale and exhale. You will likely find that over time, this is a terrific way to de-stress. You may even feel an improvement in your well-being.
By being mindful and aware of our breath, we are detaching our spiritual self from our physical self, which has been scientifically proven to help us relax and calm our anxiety. If you want to achieve mindfulness but don’t want to concentrate solely on your breath, try this next form of meditation.
Concentration meditation is similar to mindful breathing meditation, but the point of concentration can be whatever you want it to be. It can be your breath, but it can also be your eyes, legs, or even sinuses. I recommend you stick with the physical body as this is one of the best ways to meditate before bed, although if you want to focus on something external, that’s fine too.
As you relax, take deep breaths and focus on the item you chose to concentrate on. If your mind begins to wander, bring it back to your meditation, and don’t get frustrated! Remember, meditation is about relieving stress, and mindfulness is a skill that takes practice.
What meditation techniques can help me fall asleep at night?
The truth is, only you will be able to answer this question for yourself. One meditation technique could cure a person’s insomnia, while not helping a different person to fall asleep any quicker. Try a couple of these practices, and notice which ones allow you to fall asleep faster.
I always recommend mindfulness practices for bedtime. Practicing mindfulness has been proven to lead to improved sleep. Mindfulness meditation also can lower blood pressure, help with body weight management, and can provide a sense of inner peace.
Benefits of meditating before bed
Meditating before bed poses several benefits, including but not limited to:
- Improved sleep hygiene
- Higher quality rest
- Deeper sleep
This causes a chain reaction, which can decrease anxiety, help with insomnia, and may improve any other medical condition you are experiencing.
Finding your state of peace
Remember, finding peace starts with a calm environment. Set it up exactly how you like it, and don’t be afraid to incorporate essential oils or other stress-relieving amenities. Eliminate distractions to find your peace and quiet, and enjoy the deep, restful sleep that you deserve.
If you ask me, there is no place on this Earth like your bed. It is your oasis, and no other bed can bring the same feeling of comfort as yours. Laying in a comfortable position in bed, in a quiet room, allows for a stronger sense of inner peace, making it the perfect place to practice sleep meditation.
Better sleep quality
The main reason that people begin meditating in bed is to attain a better sleep quality. Meditation doesn’t have to be a part of your bedtime routine, but when introduced it almost always leads to higher quality sleep.
Meditating directly in bed will allow you to drift off during or shortly after your meditation. Since you are able to go directly from a mindful state to a deep slumber, you will notice an immediate improvement in sleep quality.
Starting the morning with energy and a good mood
Meditating in bed doesn’t just lead to better sleep, but this chain reaction leads to more productive days as well. Improving sleep inevitably results in boosted energy in the morning, which oftentimes has a trickle-down effect on the rest of your day.
If you start your day off on a good note, chances are the rest of your day will go well too. Therefore, I always recommend finding a nighttime meditation practice that works for you.
Published on November 6, 2023 and Last Updated on November 6, 2023 by: Priyank Pandey