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I swear, going to bed can feel like a job when you have anxiety. Your body just wants to sleep, but your mind–oh, no! Your anxious mind is like the boogeyman. When head meets pillow, it creeps from out of the darkness. Because it’s 3am, and, HELLO! It’s time to think about all of the horrible, no-good things you’ve ever said in your whole ENTIRE life.
What if I didn’t lock the door? What if someone breaks into my home? What if they torture and murder me? But what if they murder my family? Okay. It’s time to think of our getaway plan. Sorry, sleep.
Anxiety causes us to worry and fear everything under the sun. And it always seems to heighten when we know we need to be going to sleep. So, I want to share with you some simple ways to defeat anxiety at bedtime. Kick anxiety to the curb with a little practice, motivation, and lot and lots of lavender! No, that’s not necessary, but lavender does smell absolutely divine.
Anxiety at Bedtime: 20 Simple Ways to Defeat It
- Breathing exercises: Focus on your breathing when you go to bed. By simply inhaling and exhaling, your allowing better oxygen flow to your brain. And your distracting your mind from racing thoughts about that serial killer. Check out this post to learn some breathing exercises to help your anxiety
- Yoga: I love this! Yoga has so many amazing benefits. Not only will you de-stress and relieve your anxiety, but you can get more flexible and in shape. This post will show you a yoga workout to calm your anxiety in just 12 minutes!
- Lavender: Add a few drops of lavender essential oil to your pillow. The aroma will immediately help you relax and unwind making it easier to fall asleep. It makes your hair smell good too!
- Journaling: Keep a journal for your thoughts or a daily planner next to your bed. Write about all the positives in your life. Make goals for each day so you will stay motivated and inspired.
- Take a hot bath or shower: Wash away the day’s sweat and tears, and relax into tranquility with a nice, hot epsom salt bath.
- Grounding Exercises: Learn how to use grounding exercises to help your anxiety. It’s really easy, and kinda fun!
- Chamomile or lavender tea: Try a hot cup with some honey to feel more relaxed. Sip away the fears!
- Avoid caffeine and nicotine: Try to avoid any caffeine, sugary snacks, and nicotine a few hours before bed.
- Turn down the heat: This may not help your anxiety, specifically. But it will help you sleep so much better! Turn down the stat a few degrees so you can stay cool all night long. No sweat!
- Use a fan: Not only will this make you more comfortable, the sound can be quite soothing. I, also, like to use a humidifier when I go to sleep. It helps me breath better at nights, keeps my skin hydrated, and the sound puts me right to sleep. Like a baby.
- Eat a banana or yogurt: Research has proven that a magnesium deficiency can lead to anxiety and sleep problems.
- Get some sun: Vitamin D deficiency can lead to anxiety, as well. Soak up the sun during the day, and rid your anxieties at night.
- Massage: Getting regular massages is beyond beneficial, but it’s not always convenient. Try rubbing your feet before you go to bed.
- Meditation: This isn’t easy for everyone, but it can truly help relieve anxiety. I loved this post on meditation for anxiety, and it only takes FIVE minutes!
- Music: You don’t have to listen to the sounds of waterfalls, although, it may help you relax. Chill out to some of your favorite songs. Right now, I’m obsessed with Lana’s new song, Love. On repeat for days.
- Books: Read something before you go to bed. It keeps your mind distracted, imagination flowing, and helps you wind down after a long day.
- Grateful List: Write or think about all the blessings in your life, any daily positives, and the amazing people in your life. Trick your mind into happy thoughts!
- Get a new pillow: That old, drool saturated mess of a pillow you’ve had for seven years has got to go! You need a pillow with great support and comfort to help you get better sleep.
- Unplug: Turn off notifications to all of your social media accounts, and for the love of god, stay off them! How are you ever going to get to sleep if you’re browsing through Facebook? You don’t need to see your friend’s, boyfriend’s, sister’s, best friend’s vacation photos from 2012. Just turn it off before going to bed, and use one of the above tips to kill some time instead.
- Sleep mask: Wear a sleeping mask to bed to ensure that you have no light distractions. Light can be one of the biggest problems for why you don’t get restful sleep. You can, also, use blackout curtains instead. Just make sure to use a nightlight so the monsters can’t get to you. Just kidding. 🙂
- Talk to a therapist: BetterHelp offers online counseling sessions, ANYWHERE, ANYTIME! How cool is that? It’s super easy, and very affordable. For more advice on anxiety, you should totally check out this post!
Remember, practice is key! Try sticking to a regular sleeping schedule. Yes, you locked the door. And you turned off the oven. Don’t worry about what you said seven years ago to that one girl that one time- it doesn’t matter and you can’t change it. Relax. Breath. Now, hush little baby, don’t say a word… Goodnight!