Have you ever not been able to fall asleep because your mind is racing? Or maybe you’ve fallen sound asleep after a long day…only to wake up 20 minutes later with eyes wide open? At NIGHT, we talk about sleep pretty much 24-7 and we hear this kind of feedback all the time, especially with our home base in NYC, the city that never sleeps.
We caught up with Alexandra Janelli, one of New York City’s premier hypnotherapists and fellow believer in the power of restorative sleep, to shed some light on how she helps her celebrity clients catch better zzz’s.
Here are her ten tips to boost your sleep game, because we believe sleep should be at the top of everyone’s priority list:
- Don’t try so hard. “Stop trying to turn off your mind. Your mind never turns off even when you are sleeping.” Alexandra recommended listening to the thoughts and letting them flow, versus trying to control them.
- Catalogue your day. Alexandra explained that digestion of the day is the first step to letting go. “Start from the beginning of your day and go step by step, noting each thing you did that day from getting up and brushing your teeth to going to bed.”
- Consider using a journal. Clear your mind by writing your thoughts down. Alexandra told us this is a great way to consciously and subconsciously dump all the thoughts in your head out on paper.
- Get out of your head and into your body. “Sleep is about relaxation. Relaxation and stress cannot coexist.” Alexandra recommended thinking about sending a message to each muscle in your body to relax. Go slow and see how heavy and loose you can make each muscle feel.
- Forgive yourself. We need a reminder sometimes that we are not perfect! “There may be many things you didn’t accomplish today. Beating yourself up can only cause more anxiety.” Alexandra said to create a plan by making a to do list for tomorrow and then leave today to be yesterday.
- Accept that not every night will be a "good night sleep". “What happens in your day can be directly correlated to how well you sleep or don’t sleep. By holding a high sleep quality bar for every night, despite what happened in your day, the more you are setting yourself up for failure.” Alexandra explained that sometimes acceptance can alleviate the fear.
- Think positive. Alexandra said that by thinking "what if I don't sleep tonight?" you are already planting a subconscious suggestion and influencing a behavior of not sleeping well. “Reframe your thinking to positive ego boosting suggestions, telling yourself that tonight you will sleep.”
- Embrace the night. “Frustration increases stress.” Alexandra encouraged thinking of ways in which you can embrace the night when you are awake. Beating yourself up only leads to more stress and less possibility for falling back asleep.
- Make your bed a comfortable, relaxing environment. Alexandra explained that it is important to take your time finding the right bedding and build a comfortable, dark environment, conducive to quiet, restful sleep.
- Use guided hypnosis recordings. “There are many apps and recordings on YouTube that can help filter your thoughts and redirect your mind to a state of calm. These recordings can help bring you through the different brainwave lengths to a state of deep sleep.” Alexandra suggested trying her Theta Springs Sleep Better Hypnotherapy Program.