Guided Meditation For Sleep: A Powerful Tool To Help You Get A Better Night’s Rest
Good, restful, peaceful sleep… we all want more, we all know we need more. But it’s not always easy to achieve. There are several things you can do to help you sleep, but a standout strategy that many people find really helpful is using a guided meditation for sleep.
Have you ever heard of that? Have you ever tried it? Perhaps you’re looking for the right meditation that will work for you.
In this article I’ll explain:
- How meditation can help you sleep
- What is guided mediation?
- Three free guided meditation options (including a video you can play straight away)
- Three paid guided meditation options
How Can Meditation Help Me Sleep?
Let’s start by understanding what meditation actually is. It’s a bit of a buzz word at the moment and I’ve seen the term used quite loosely. According to Yoga International, meditation is “a precise technique for resting the mind and attaining a state of consciousness that is totally different from the normal waking state”. Meditation, done right, should result in your mind feeling clear, relaxed, and inwardly focused.
Meditation is therefore a tool that can work really well for all aspects of our life, as our busy minds with all their distractions can make it hard for us to concentrate in many areas. A calm and focused mind will be more productive at work, be more present in relationships, do better at sports, etc etc! So how exactly is it good for sleep?
When you meditate, lots of things happen inside your body that are things that also happen as you fall asleep. These are things such as a reduction in your blood pressure, the slowing of your pulse, and a decrease in stress hormones. So, imagine the pairing of those physical changes that come with meditation, along with the quiet and clear mind and you can start to see how meditation is an excellent tool to help us sleep. After all, its pretty hard to fall asleep if you’re feeling stressed and have a hundred thoughts flying around in your head! If this is you, trying a guided meditation for better sleep could be just what you need.
Basically, meditation can help you fall asleep faster and stay asleep for longer.
What Is Guided Meditation?
A guided meditation is a video or audio track where someone talks you through the meditation. Different guided meditations might talk you through topics such as:
- What your body feels like as you lie down
- Focusing on your breathing
- Talking through some images or a story
The meditation might be long or short, it may include music or atmospheric sounds, or just the sound of the narrator’s voice. You might have the option of a male or female voice.
It can take a few tries to feel like you can calm your mind and get the benefits of meditation so be prepared to put in a bit of practice. Try not to get frustrated with it, the last thing you want to be feeling as you’re getting ready to go to bed is more stress!
Free Guided Meditation For Sleep: 3 Options
There are some excellent free guided meditation options out there for you to try. If you’re just looking to dip your toes into the world of guided mediation for sleep to see if it’s something that might work for you, I highly recommend you give these options a try before you consider paying for anything.
- Falling Asleep by Mediatainment. This is a 20 minute track narrated by a female voice. It starts out with music in the background, and talking through relaxing your body. It then moves through a relaxing story of a trip to a meadow with sounds of nature (birds chirping, water flowing, etc). It then finishes with more music. A great thing about this meditation is is prompts you to go and deal with any loose ends you might have from the day, before you begin. This will help you settlle your mind. This meditation is free, but if you want to pay for other ones, you can.
- Guided Meditation For Natural Healing Sleep with Michael Sealy. This is a one hour track narrated by Michael Sealy. It is a youtube video but the only imagery is a candle, it’s designed for you to just listen. It starts with gentle music in the background, and Micheal talking you through relaxing your body and noticing your breath. At around 25 minutes in, you’ll be encouraged to visualise yourself in a relaxing setting, such as a cosy log cabin or a calm beach, whatever you like. This longer track is great if you have real trouble falling asleep and need something longer to really relax into. I have to admit, I felt quite sleepy while listening through this one so I could describe it for you! I might just use it myself.
- Night Train To The Coast. This is a shorter (27 minutes) guided meditation with a male voice. It describes a train journey with gentle music combined with the sounds of a train rolling along the tracks in the background. I’ve put the video just below so you can listen to it right now if you wish.
If you look for “guided meditation for sleep” inside YouTube, you will find many more free options. I encourage you to try out a few different ones: try varying the length, the story, and if the narrator is male or female to find what works best for you. I’ve got another example you can try out in this article. You may also find some good meditation resources at your local library.
Paid Guided Meditation For Sleep: 3 Options
As you can see from the above, there are some great free options out there to help you get started with guided meditation for sleep. So why pay? There are several reasons you might want to pay for your meditations. These include:
- Access to clearer sounding audio files without relying on YouTube videos
- Specialist technology within the recordings such as music designed to work with your brainwaves and enhance sleep
- Meditation courses you can work through (at your own pace)
- Access to whole libraries of online meditation tracks
In this section, I’ll introduce you to three great options for paid guided meditations. Some are a one time purchase for one product, the third and final one is a whole library of meditations. Please note that the links to the first two products are affiliate links, which means if you make a purchase I’ll make a small commission (learn more here). The third one is not an affiliate link, just something I pay to use myself that I really like.
1. A ONE OFF PURCHASE: Downloads and CDs from iAwake Technologies
iAwake specializes in producing a range of “entertainment” products that focus in on your brainwaves so you get the most benefit from your download or CD. They cover everything, from the foundations of meditation through to meditation for power naps.
Their sounds are produced by a range of specialists, and the Sound Asleep Guided Meditation, which I recommend for you, is produced by a hypnotist. If he can’t get you to sleep who can, right? The music definitely sounds different in this track than in the free options I mentioned above. It sounds a lot to me like the sounds you get on BrainFM , which is an app of music (I use it to concentrate on doing productive work) that is based on similar principles around your brainwaves. The narrator has quite a deep voice .
With your Sound Asleep purchase, you get two audio tracks of 36 minutes each, one of which is a guided meditation the other is sounds designed to mimic brainwaves during deep sleep. There is also a bonus track. It costs $37 for the digital download and $47 for a package including digital download + CDs.
2. A COURSE YOU CAN WORK THROUGH: Deep Sleep Meditation Course by Live And Dare
Live and Dare is the creation of Giovanni Dienstmann, an author and meditation coach. On his website, Live and Dare, Giovanni has created a number of courses that are designed to help you “overcome anxiety and mental noise with the power of meditation, wisdom and awareness”.
The Deep Sleep Meditation Course is a 21 day course that covers everything meditation can give you for good sleep. It is a self paced course that you get lifetime access to, you don’t have to complete it in 21 days. Here’s an overview of what the course covers:
You also get access to a private forum where you can ask Giovanni himself questions if you get stuck with anything or want to talk to other people using the course. You’ll pay a one off payment of $47 to buy the Deep Sleep Course.
3. A WHOLE LIBARY OF MEDITATIONS: HeadSpace
You might have heard about HeadSpace already. It’s the world’s most popular meditation app, and with your membership you get access to all their courses. I use the HeadSpace app myself, and within the Sleep section there are 25 guided meditations for you. They are each 45 minutes long, and whether the narrator is male or female varies.
HeadSpace also has guided meditations to help you out if you wake up during the night.
Click Here To Learn More About Sleep By HeadSpace (not an affiliate link, I just like it)