Why Music Could Help You Sleep Better
Music has the power to help us in many ways. And one of the key benefits is helping us with our sleep. By creating a healthy sleep routine, lowering our heart rate and making us feel relaxed, music and sleep can be a match made in heaven.
We’ve put together a few ways to use music in your sleep hygiene, and how you can weave it into your and your family’s bedtime routine.
Have you ever soothed a baby to sleep by singing a lullaby? It’s common knowledge that babies and children can fall asleep easily to the calming sounds of a song. But it’s not only children that benefit from using music to fall asleep. Adults might also find that calming sleep music can relax the mind and body to create a perfect environment for a good night’s sleep.
So, what is it about music that could help us sleep? The most effective calming sleep music has a slow tempo. The type of music doesn’t matter, but the bpm (beat per minute) does (although we wouldn’t recommend metal music for sleep!). This is because slow music can lower our heart rate and help ease you into a good night’s sleep.
It can also be very beneficial to weave relaxing sleep music into your routine, before you go to sleep. By playing calming and slow music while you start to wind down before bed, you can create a relaxing environment that will prepare you psychologically and physically for sleep. The more often you enact this routine, the more effective it can become.
Here are a few ways to put relaxing music into your sleep routine:
- Choose your relaxing sleep music. You might like to create a specific sleep playlist from your current music library, or search for new music. You might enjoy sleep meditation music, which is quite ambient and can help create a spa-like environment for your bedtime routine.
- Shut down electronics. Ban all electronics one hour before bed and put your relaxing sleep music on while you wind down.
- Create a relaxing sleep environment. Light candles or dim the lights, make sure your curtains are drawn and your room is dark, keep your bedroom cool.
- Practice pre-sleep calming techniques. Meditation or reading a book can help the mind switch off from any anxious or repetitive thoughts.
- Deep breathing. Once you have shut your eyes, practice long breaths: 4 seconds in and 5-7 seconds out. Along with the calming sleep music, this will help lower your heart rate so you can drift into a deep sleep.
- Integrate music into your routine every night. Routine can be hugely beneficial for sleep. Play your relaxing music every night to create a link between relaxation, sleep and your music for heightened benefits.
Find out more ways to get better natural sleep here
Stress and sleep are two sides of the same coin. And music can benefit both. Feeling stressed, anxious and having repetitive thoughts can hugely affect your sleep, so it’s important to try to ameliorate these feelings ahead of getting into bed. Here are a few ways you can do that:
- Relaxing music. When you feel stressed or anxious, putting on some relaxing tunes can give you a moment of calm and take your mind away from whatever is bothering you. Listening to songs with a slow tempo can help lower your heart rate and avoid anxious feelings.
- Practice mindfulness and meditation. Taking a moment to focus on the here and now can help you to take away the feeling of worry or anxiety around thoughts to do with the future or the past.
- Breathing exercises. Breathing slowly and calmly can slow your heart rate and help you to restore calm during your day: 4 seconds in and 5-7 seconds out.
- Self-care. Making sure you practice one act of self-care during the day. Something for you and no one else to make you feel calm and restore your balance.
- Exercise. Exercise is a well-known mood booster and sleep aid; by raising endorphin levels during the day through working out, our stress levels can be helped. While being physically tired when going to bed can help getting a good night’s sleep.
Discover eight things you can do every day to feel more calm here