Candle Meditation To Overcome Insomnia
Insomnia and milder sleeping problems can greatly impair your life. Candle meditation is a drug free way to reprogram your mind to allow sleep. Using a scented candle with pure essential oils aimed at promoting sleep can improve the effectiveness of the meditation. Choose your candle carefully as many use fragrance oils which don’t have the same aromatherapy effect.
First you need to assess your sleep patterns for possible causes. The following list should help assess these problems. 1. You have medical conditions or professional counselling that needs to be attended to. These conditions need to be dealt with professionally before candle meditation can be truly effective. These conditions can include the following; sleep apnoea, chronic twitching or aching, chemical or alcohol dependency and clinical depression. 2. You view your bed as a place of activity. If you regularly use your bed for activities (except sexual activity), you need to re-associate the bed with rest and sleep. These activities can include; watching TV, reading, working from home and taking phone calls. (Tip – If you use your bedroom as a home office or live in a bedsit/shared house, then either use other furniture for activities or you can rearrange the bed’s appearance with cushions etc, so that it has two identities.) 3. You take stimulants during the day. Large amounts of caffeine, taurine or other stimulants will upset your relaxation at night. Avoid lots of tea, coffee, and energy drinks, especially in the evening. 4. You do mentally or physically demanding activities just before bed. Try to organise a period before going to bed that will encourage a more relaxed and calming frame of mind. 5. Napping during the day. Until your new sleep pattern is established it is important to avoid any sleeping during the day so you are at your most tired before bed.
There are three main types of thought processes that can happen when you are trying to go to sleep. You might find that you do one, two, three or even more variations of these, all of which inhibit your ability to sleep. The main internal monologues are; 1. Anxious time watching. You watch the time pass by worrying about not falling asleep and if, or when you will. (Tip – Turn clocks to face away from the bed.) 2. Overpowering negativity. You become convinced that you are never going to go to sleep, that everything goes wrong. You start to think of other things that go wrong in your life and you are unable to change them. 3. Over analytical. Your mind keeps analysing not being asleep, when you need to get up, how tired you will e when you get up, if you went to sleep now how many hours you would get, what time you need to be at work by, etc, etc.
To reprogram your sleep patterns you need to change how you approach sleeping and replace your internal monologues that keep you awake with one that will promote sleep. The candle meditation is a two step process that, with the elimination of the possible causes mentioned above, should start to have a real impact in about a week. After about three weeks of following the process daily, your mind will replace your old habits with your new permanent pattern.
Step one. The candle meditation.
At a regular time every day before you go to bed find a quiet spot where you can sit undisturbed and relaxed. You need to place your candle in a safe place, a few feet in front of you. Watching the flame of the candle in front of you let yourself relax. Keeping your gaze on the candle let yourself become aware of how your feet feel. Let yourself notice any tension and relax them, telling yourself either out loud or inside your head to ‘Relax and Rest’. If you become distracted, refocus on the candle flame. When they are relaxed move up to your calves and repeat the process, letting yourself ‘Relax and Rest’. Continue this process up into your body, down your arms and up into your neck resting and relaxing each section at a time. When you ‘Relax and Rest’ your neck and jaw line pay extra attention as this is where a lot of tension is stored up. Continue all the way up to the top of your head. As you gaze at the flame you let your breathing slow naturally. Let the flame hold your attention as your breathing becomes more serene. Calmly and quietly you repeatedly tell yourself the following phrases. Say them out loud or in your head with a firm voice that accepts them as true. If you forget any of them or say them wrongly then let them go and carry on calmly. If you feel any anxiety or tension, pause as you repeat your relaxation process and slow and calm your breathing, letting the flame hold your attention.
Time is unimportant.
As I rest my mind floats.
Resting makes my mind and body relax.
Resting is easy for me.
When I go to bed, other thoughts are put away until tomorrow.
As I rest in bed I let myself fall asleep naturally.
If I wake I let myself relax and fall asleep again.
After repeating this a few times imagine yourself in bed relaxing, see your face losing any tension. Picture yourself falling asleep.
Step two. Continuing the meditation.
Put the candle out and go to bed. Repeat the process of relaxation for your body. Focus on your breathing, letting it naturally slow. If you find thoughts pop into your head, when you notice them tell yourself calmly you are resting and will deal with them tomorrow. Let your attention drift back towards your breathing again.
Good luck and stick with it, it will work!