How mindfulness improves sleep

October 20, 2015

wildmind meditation newsAdam Hoffman, Greater Good Science Center: From the pressures of tight deadlines to anxiety about job security, the stresses of the workplace take their toll far beyond the office, infiltrating our relationships, undermining our thoughts— and often affecting our ability to sleep. In fact, a recent survey found that 85 percent of U.S. workers lose sleep due to work-related stress. And if we’re not sleeping well, it’s easier to get derailed at work and elsewhere.

However, new findings from a research team in the Netherlands suggest that even a small amount of mindfulness meditation can help calm our hyperactive minds and improve our sleep. …

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How meditation can help you sleep better

February 26, 2015

wildmind meditation newsSleep Soundly – Guitar Music for Insomnia (CD) Esther Crain, Men’s Journal: Not being able to fall and stay asleep at night is frustrating, and there’s no shortage of remedies promising to score you the rest you crave, from sleep meds to eye masks and smartphone apps. But the real key to beating insomnia might be as simple as taking up a new trend in meditation. A recent study from JAMA Internal Medicine found that mindful meditation — the practice of being nonjudgmentally aware of the various thoughts streaming into your brain at any given time — successfully helped adult …

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Mindfulness meditation may help older adults sleep better

February 17, 2015

wildmind meditation newsKarma: Finding Freedom in This Moment (2 CDs), by Pema Chodron and Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche Rachael Rettner, Live Science: Meditating may help older adults sleep better, a new study suggests.

The study involved about 50 adults in Los Angeles ages 55 and older who had trouble sleeping, including difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep, or who felt sleepy during the day. Participants were randomly assigned to complete either a mindfulness meditation program — in which people learn to better pay attention to what they are feeling physically and mentally from moment to moment — or a sleep education program that taught the …

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Could meditating backfire as a cure for insomnia?

January 14, 2015

Sleeping BuddhaWhen I find myself awake in the middle of the night, perhaps after a trip to the bathroom or a weird dream, I often practice some kind of meditation to quiet my over-active mind. I’ll usually pay attention to my breathing, or do a body scan, and most times this will help me calm down and nod off.

But could meditating in the middle of the night create its own problems? Someone asked me whether this practice could either lead to us developing the habit of falling asleep during meditation, or keep us awake because mindfulness is so associated with alert attention that we can’t fall asleep.

I don’t think the first is much of … Read more »

Mindfulness-based meditation helps teenagers with cancer

March 13, 2014

Mindfulness-based meditation could lessen some symptoms associated with cancer in teens, according to the results of a clinical trial intervention led by researchers at the University of Montreal and its affiliated CHU Sainte-Justine children’s hospital.

Mindfulness-based meditation focuses on the present moment and the connection between the mind and body. Adolescents living with cancer face not only the physical symptoms of their condition, but also the anxiety and uncertainty related to the progression of the disease, the anticipation of physical and emotional pain related to illness and treatment, the significant changes implied in living with cancer, as well as the fear of recurrence after remission. Catherine Malboeuf-Hurtubise of the university’s Department of Psychology presented the … Read more »

What are our screens doing to us?

March 9, 2013

Watch this video. And ask others to watch it.

Of course in a sense our screens are doing no more to us than presenting us with sensory input, or opportunities for sensory input. And so the question is more “what are we doing with our screens,” or even “what are we losing while we are attending to the input from our screens.”

In my case, one of the significant things I’m losing is the quality and quantity of my sleep. I stay up too late reading. I always (thanks to the Zite and Pocket apps) have plenty of thought-provoking articles queued up, ready to read. As a consequence I end up being chronically sleep-deprived. I’m … Read more »

The compassionate art of taking breaks

February 13, 2013

iStock_000001218026XSmallAt the weekend I read a great article by Tony Schwartz in the New York Times. It was exactly what I needed at that moment to address the problem of being overly busy. The article was about the importance of taking breaks in order to maintain productivity, and it started like this:

Think for a moment about your typical workday. Do you wake up tired? Check your e-mail before you get out of bed? Skip breakfast or grab something on the run that’s not particularly nutritious? Rarely get away from your desk for lunch? Run from meeting to meeting with no time in between? Find it nearly impossible to keep up with the volume of

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Mindfulness as an effective treatment for insomnia

November 21, 2012

Do you often lie in bed unable to fall asleep? Do you regularly wake up in the middle of the night or too early in the morning? If so, you are not alone. About one out of every 10 adults has chronic insomnia.

Insomnia causes daytime problems like feeling fatigued or being unable to concentrate. Insomnia is associated with accidents, low productivity and serious health problems. It is also an important risk factor for depression. The most common treatment for chronic insomnia is sleeping pills. People regularly take these pills for years, despite troublesome side effects, and without addressing the underlying problems that cause or perpetuate their insomnia.

A study by Cynthia Gross, PhD, indicates … Read more »

Mindful ways to get a good night’s sleep

November 5, 2011

Getting a good night’s sleep is vital to feeling energetic and making the most of our days. Some nights, even though we are very tired it is difficult to get to sleep because there is so much going on in our minds. When this happens, we feel stressed and that makes it even more difficult to get some rest.

Here is a list of techniques you may want to use to clear your mind before bed:

1. Write a list of what you need to do the next day. Having the list helps to let go of worrying that you will forget to do something.

2. Practice yoga. Practicing yoga takes concentration so it takes … Read more »

First-time meditators: how to achieve that perfect state of “ohm”

March 31, 2011

The other day, I was conversing with a friend, telling her about how I’ve been having a difficult time sleeping as of late. I’ll maybe sleep four hours a night — and this is coming from someone who typically requires a solid eight. The stressors of life have been, unfortunately, taking their toll.

“Have you tried meditating?” she asked.

In response, I shook my head “no.” I mean, really. How could my coffee-chugging, gum-snapping, neurotic-driven self quite possibly clear my thoughts for 30 seconds, let alone the length of a meditation session?

Instructor and Program Manager Jennifer Stevenson of the Art of Living Foundation explains that there are two types of stress: physical, when your … Read more »