It’s no secret that stress can negatively affect sleep.
When there are things that are stressing you out - problems at work, financial woes, relationship troubles - it can be tough to shut your mind down at night.
When you can’t turn off your mind, the rest of your body has trouble relaxing. When the rest of your body has trouble relaxing, falling asleep can be really hard. Even impossible sometimes.
So what do we do? Naturally, we try to relax.
There are all kinds of relaxation methods out there. For promoting good sleep, there are a few tried and true out there:
Most of these techniques actually work really well - but deep breathing exercises work especially well.
As an NPR report pointed out, breathing exercises:
can be used as a method to train the body's reaction to stressful situations and dampen the production of harmful stress hormones.
Translation? Breathing exercises can reverse your body's production of stress hormones.
That's powerful stuff.
It can be tough to focus on breathing sometimes though. Your mind just starts wandering all over the place, you have to fight with yourself to just "think happy thoughts" and do the dang breathing exercises.
So what can you do?
Enter the emWave2® by HeartMath®.
Not sure how you can get away enough times during the day to relax?
Take a cue from the cigarette break and take an emWave break instead. By managing your stress at different points during the day, your increasing the likelihood that it won't come back to haunt you as you're lying in bed.
I actually tried this product the other day and it works pretty well.
By focusing on the blinking pacer light, I really was able to slow down my breathing, which caused me to feel calmer afterward.
The brilliance of the emWave2® is that, by concentrating on the breathing pacer, I shut out every other thought and just focused on breathing along with the pacer.
I found out that what I was experiencing was a product of biofeedback.
Basically, biofeedback is what happens when one uses a tool to measure and become aware of one's own physiological functions and behaviors. Research into these practices has shown that they are not only effective, but they also produce results that last longer than other types of behavior modification signals.
This is the principle the emWave2® is based on; by seeing your heartbeat and following the breathing pacer, you focus on taking deep, slow breaths, which in turn lowers your pulse. Having something visual to focus on also helps with that wandering mind.
Like other Zeo recommended tools, the emWave2® is available in the Zeo Webshop. If you're finding yourself waking up at night or just unable to fall alseep due to feelings of stress or tension, then this little guy might be just what you need.
Also like other Zeo recommended items, you don't need a Zeo to help reap the sleep benefits of the emWave2.®
Now take a deep breath, exhale, and get to sleep :)