Techniques for a better sleep:
Breathe Stress Out, Breathe Relaxation In:
- Make sure you are in a comfortable seated position, with your legs crossed, and your back is straight.
- Rest your left hand on your left thigh or knee, with your palm facing up.
- Bring your right hand towards your face. Press the index and middle fingers of your right hand against the palm. Hold the ring finger, pinky, and thumb straight up.
- With the thumb of your right hand, close the right nostril. Slowly and gently inhale through your left nostril.
- At the peak of the inhale, release the thumb and close the left nostril with the right-hand ring finger. Exhale through the right nostril.
- Repeat steps 4 and 5 two more times.
- Next, repeat the same procedure on the left side of the body. The right hand now rests on the right knee, palm facing upward. Bring the left hand up towards the face. The index and middle fingers of the left hand are pressed against the left palm. Ring finger, pinkie, and thumb are straight up.
- With the left thumb, close the left nostril. Inhale through the right nostril.
- At the top of the inhale, release the thumb and use the left ring finger to close the right nostril. Exhale through the left nostril.
- Repeat steps 8 and 9 two more times.
- Now rest the left hand on the left knee and the right hand on the right knee, with the palms upwards.
- Inhale slowly and gently through both nostrils. Then exhale through them, again slowly and gently. Repeat this two more time.
*Note this one works exceptionally well when you wake up in the middle of the night and can’t fall back asleep.
Start from the bottom up.
Toes—Focus on each toe individually. Feel free to wiggle them, noting how much different they feel when in motion compared to being still. Relax the toes on one foot and then began to move the toes on the other foot. You can go back and forth with this as you slowly make your way up your legs.
- Soles of the feet
Really focus in on parts of the body that feel tense, tight, and or in pain. Then, flex that muscle and release it. Really let out a good sigh upon releasing. Having thoroughly examined your lower extremities, move onto:
Pay particularly close attention to the shoulders, as that is where the part of the body that likes to hold a lot of tension. Having relaxed your shoulders, it’s time to move progressively down arms—first one, and then the other, including:
Once both hands and arms are totally relaxed, move onto other areas of the body that also tends to hold a lot of tension:
- Eyelids/Eye Sockets
Still awake? Now try reversing the processes, relaxing from the scalp down to the toes. Take a few nights to internalize and get used to this practice.
Try these pressure points for a better sleep, these are 3 of the best ancient Chinese acupuncture points for insomnia:
You will find this pressure point right behind the ear. It is a soft area just before the point where your neck muscles meet your jaw line. This acupressure point can be massaged with the thumb or with the index and middle fingers for about 15 to 20 minutes. Fun Fact: the word anmian literally translates to “peaceful sleep.”
This pressure point is located between the two tendons on the underside of the forearm, just above the wrist. You can find it by placing three fingers right at the wrist joint and feeling around that spot. You should be able to feel—and in some cases even see—the two tendons clearly. Apply pressure in this spot.
If possible, buy wristband’s that will keep pressure on the neiguan all night long. A more cost-effective approach is to simply tape a kidney bean to the area.
Centrally located towards the rear of the heel, this spot responds to heat as well as pressure—which is why soaking your feet in warm water before bedtime can be a soothing alternative to pressing the shimien with your fingers.