Whether your job has become increasingly stressful, you’re having relationship difficulties, or you just can’t seem to keep your mind from racing, bedtime can, for so many of us, be more of a struggle than a time of peace and rest. Perhaps the stress of this past hectic year has amplified these challenges, making sleep hard to come by.
While there’s no one sure cure for sleep difficulties, there are several helpful mindfulness exercises that you can integrate into your nightly routine to help improve your mental health and help you get the quality sleep you need.
One such practice is the repetition of sleep affirmations, a new trend that is helping people of all ages practice a positive mindset before bedtime. Read on for a comprehensive look into what sleep affirmations can offer you as well as some examples as you get started.
What Are Sleep Affirmations?
Have you ever found yourself thinking or whispering, “You can do this,” before beginning a stressful project or stepping into a nerve-wracking situation? This is an affirmation – a positive statement you tell yourself to improve your mental state.
Repeating positive statements about yourself and your capabilities has a unique way of rewiring your brain to see yourself in a more positive light. It can’t just be done once, though. It’s an exercise that needs to be repeated as if you were training for the “Affirmation Olympics.”
As the name suggests, sleep affirmations are simply affirmations you repeat to yourself before bed. Bedtime is a particularly important time for our brains to receive positive affirmations – it’s when we settle down and allow our minds to process our feelings and experiences. Sometimes, this can lead us into some pretty negative thought loops of self-doubt and anxiety, which is where sleep affirmations come into play.
Tips for Using Sleep Affirmations Effectively
Before you get started with your own sleep affirmations, there are a few steps you’ll want to keep in mind that will help you benefit most from this practice:
Speak in Present Tense. It’s important to remember that affirmations aren’t necessarily about being optimistic, as optimism is future-oriented when affirmations are present-oriented. Rather than saying “I will,” try saying “I am.” We’re trying to convince our brains that we deserve to feel our very best right now.
Be Specific With Your Goals. We’re trying to manifest a world where we are living out something measurable. Rather than saying “I am happy,” try saying “my relationships are making me happy.”
Believe Your Affirmation. It may take some practice to get to this step, as you may not feel like the affirmations are working immediately. However, making an effort to believe what you’re saying is important to convince even the cynical parts of your brain that you deserve what you’re saying, and it will occur.
Visualize It. Our brains tend to latch onto images better than loose concepts. What does the reality you’re manifesting look and feel like? Cling to this as you repeat your affirmations.
Repeat, Repeat, Repeat. Perhaps the most important step in effectively using affirmations is to repeat them. Our brains receive so many stimuli every day that we need to emphasize the things that matter most through repetition. This will shape your perspective and lead to positive transformation much more quickly.
Affirmations for Bedtime Worries
Much like meditation and other mindfulness activities, affirmations can serve as reminders that you are in full control of your mind, even when it likes to believe otherwise. Once you start to feel that wakeful anxiety creep in, try repeating these affirmations to take back control:
I have the power to control my thoughts and emotions
I am stronger than this emotion.
I am not worried about things I can’t control.
I am aware of my surroundings and feel at peace.
The important thing to remember about these statements is that they are attainable. By repeating them to yourself, your brain will become more and more likely to latch onto these ideas and feel more at peace.
Have you ever noticed your mind criticizing you as soon as you lay your head on the pillow? Rather than falling into the trap of thinking “you should be better,” shift the narrative to “I am great” with these self-love affirmations:
I am learning to love myself more every day.
I love and approve of myself.
I am in the process of positive change.
I love my body and all it does for me.
What they say is true – you have to love yourself before you can genuinely love other people. Self-love is a never-ending process, but hopefully, these words of affirmation will help your brain see you as the beautiful person you are, allowing you to dream in peace.
Affirmations for Mental & Physical Rest
If you’re struggling to sleep at night, you may need to give your brain a talk, reminding it of what you deserve from it. The following affirmations are given power by the firm belief that you deserve to rest at bedtime:
As I lay in bed, I let go of whatever does not serve me.
My to-do list can wait until tomorrow.
I sleep through the whole night.
My confidence and happiness increase while I sleep.
Creating a positive headspace before you fall asleep will help prevent nightmares and provide you with a calm, deep rest.
If you’re struggling to resonate with certain sleep affirmations, that’s okay! They aren’t one-size-fits-all. In fact, creating your own sleep affirmations is encouraged so that you can manifest whatever feels most important to your life right now.
It’s also important to remember that several factors go into getting restful sleep. Positive self-talk is critical for overall well-being, but it’s equally important to pay attention to diet, exercise, and hydration among other healthy habits.
Interested in checking out all 6 sleep affirmations or even hanging them up in your bedroom? Download Tommy John’s printable versions below!
Luke Strauss is a Junior Content Marketing Specialist at Siege Media. He primarily covers topics related to wellness and career development. When he’s not writing he enjoys reading, exploring, making music, and spending time with his friends and family.