1. Write down a to-do list right before you go to bed
A recent study published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology found that people fell asleep faster after writing a very specific to-do list for five minutes at bedtime. The study explains that you’re likely to run through and worry about incomplete future tasks in bed, delaying sleep. But when you write down a comprehensive to-do list, you’re winding down and emptying your mind.
2. Close your eyes and imagine yourself doing something you’re good at in great detail
I read this in a men’s health magazine: A major league pitching coach instructed a pitcher who couldn’t sleep to picture himself throwing 10 perfect pitches. Every little detail. From prep, to wind-up, to delivery, to reset. For me, it’s been a few things: golf swing, programming, making a great sales call (I work in sales). It doesn’t matter. Picturing something you’re good at — something that’s second nature to you — is relaxing, reassuring, and you’ll be asleep in no time.
3. Repeat “blank black” in your mind — seriously, try it!
Say ‘blank black’ in your head. I swear it works.
Natalie Eberspacher, Facebook
4. Keep an essential oil diffuser on your nightstand, filling your room with calming scents
Put lavender and peppermint essential oils in the diffuser! Works like a charm!
Payton Finnigan, Facebook
5. Stop using electronics a half hour (or more) before bed
Studies show that the amount of electric light you take in from your various devices inhibits your body from producing melatonin, the hormone that helps you drift off to sleep. So, I try to stop using technology at least 30 minutes before my head hits the pillow.
Image Credit: whatgiftoday.tumblr.com
6. Don’t do anything in bed that isn’t sleep
If you do work, homework, or anything non-sleep related in bed (OK, besides sex), your brain will associate that space with those stressful activities, preventing you from unwinding as you try to fall asleep. Making my bed a technology and work-free zone has worked wonders for my restless mind at night.
7. Listen to the Sleep with Me podcast, in which a character named Dearest Scooter tells incomprehensible stories in a monotone voice that’ll space you out in no time.
Sleep with Me’ works every time.
Kara Smith, Facebook
8. Watch some ASMR videos, which, for some people, are so soothing they get tingles down their scalp and spine
I listen to some relaxing ASMR videos, and just when I feel myself give in to dream land, I stop.
Callie Wagner, Facebook
9. Make some banana peel tea, which is said to be packed with magnesium that helps you relax into a deep sleep
Take an organic banana peel, put it in a pot of water, boil for 10 minutes, drain the tea into a mug, and add cinnamon. Drink it one hour before bedtime.
Brad Diamond, Facebook
10. Take a hot shower or bath (about 90 minutes before bed)
Lush Twilight bath bomb, hot bath, Lush Twilight spray on the pillows, Lush Sleepy cream on the body, a good book, a relaxing tea, and good night!
Katerina Pelzmann, Facebook
11. And finally, try the four-seven-eight method: Inhale for four seconds, hold for seven seconds, then exhale for eight seconds
Repeat four to five times. You lie there thinking it doesn’t work, then you wake up and it’s the next day.
Kathy Clark Patti, Facebook
Article have been lightly edited for length/clarity.