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Expert GuidancePicturing Restful Sleep

Picturing Restful Sleep

Prepare the mind for bedtime by picturing a deeper sleep, and imagining what a truly restful night will feel like.

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Hi, and welcome to this exercise on visualizing a restful night's sleep. So when you're ready, let's begin by finding a comfortable position for you and your body. You can be lying down for this exercise or sitting upright. Just resting the palms of your hands down by your sides or on your legs. Closing the eyes if you'd like, perhaps imagining another pair of eyelids closing over yours. And just begin to notice the breath. And noticing how you're breathing. If you'd like, taking a few deep breaths here. Breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth. Allowing the mind and body to settle. Now, returning the breath back to its natural rhythm and just feeling the body resting on the surface beneath you. Softening the eyebrows, unclenching the jaw, relaxing the shoulders. Feeling into the arms and hands, the back and belly, the legs and feet. Resting and softening with each inhale and each exhale. And now bringing to mind what a perfect night's rest would feel like. Or maybe just a restful night's sleep. Noticing how it feels to be well rested. Perhaps less tense, relaxed or clear. Noticing what it would look like. Perhaps noticing what your sleep is like now. There could be a struggle, tug of war with the mind, wanting things to be different. Maybe replaying moments from the day. So just acknowledging those thoughts and feelings and trying your best to let them go. Focusing on what's possible instead. Maybe even reflecting on the moments leading up to your sleep. What actions could you take to get a restful slumber? What would be most helpful and most supportive for you? And then just letting that image go. Noticing what sensations are present in the body. Beginning to feel the weight of the body pressing down into the surface beneath you. Wiggling your fingers and wiggling your toes. And when you're ready, slowly and gently opening your eyes. And just taking a moment here to pause and reflect on what came up for you during that exercise. Visualization exercises like this one can help us to reach our goal. If getting a restful sleep is a goal of yours, continue to practice envisioning what that would look and feel like for you. The more we can practice, the more real it will become....


TypeExpert Guidance
Duration5 min

About your teachers

  • A former Buddhist monk, Andy has guided people in meditation and mindfulness for 20 years. In his mission to make these practices accessible to all, he co-created the Headspace app in 2010.

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  • Eve is a mindfulness teacher, overseeing Headspace’s meditation curriculum. She is passionate about sharing meditation to help others feel less stressed and experience more compassion in their lives.

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  • As a meditation teacher, Dora encourages others to live, breathe, and be with the fullness of their experiences. She loves meditation’s power to create community and bring clarity to people’s minds.

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  • Kessonga has been an acupuncturists, therapist, and meditation teacher, working to bring mindfulness to the diverse populations of the world.

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  • Rosie Acosta has studied yoga and mindfulness for more than 20 years and taught for over a decade. Rosie’s mission is to help others overcome adversity and experience radical love.

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