It’s week 2 of sleep month, and we’re moving on from good sleep hygiene to physical relaxation. 💆
Activating your relaxation response will put the brakes on stress and bring your body and mind into a state of equilibrium. All sorts of positive, physiological things happen in your body, helping to calm the body into sleep: your heart rate slows down; breathing becomes slower and deeper; blood pressure drops; muscles relax, and blood flow to the brain increases.
Progressive Muscle Relaxation, where you tense and relax different muscles in your body in sequence, is one of my favorite ways to release tension in my body and has been shown to result in improved sleep quality.
2:4 Breathing and 4:7:8 Breathing are based on an ancient Indian technique for regulating the breath, called “Pranayama.” This type of breathing has been shown to decrease heart rate and blood pressure, as well as increase parasympathetic (“rest & digest”) activity, which are physiological conditions that are conducive to sleep.
Here’s to easing out of stress and anxiety and into blissful sleep. 💤