Our mothers may have told us that counting sheep would do the trick of lulling us to sleep…

But in a day and age when we are constantly connected to our emails, on-going to-do lists and a million other details wound up in a full day of work, it doesn’t seem quite as simple, and it isn’t. This article from GOOP shares a few seriously helpful tips and tricks, from physical practices to little purchases, that will lead you into a more peaceful sleep tonight.

Photo courtesy of Kat Borchart/The Licensing Project.com

By Goop in partnership with Buffy

It’s 10 p.m. You just got home from dinner. You wash your face, put on your pajamas, get into bed, scroll through the news. The day felt ninety hours long. You’re going to fall right sleep. Except you don’t. Now it’s 11 p.m. Now it’s 11:30. Now it’s tomorrow. That’s when the anxiety of insomnia sets in. Laura Pensiero would tell you it was those last few hours that are to blame. Says the breathwork practitioner and Reiki master, “You want to make certain you release any emotional, physical, and spiritual tension before bed. You do not want to take the stress of your day with you to the bedroom.” But considering kids, work, partners, friends, Instagram, unsent emails, shopping lists, and all of the other things that swirl around in our heads, Pensiero’s mandate can be far easier said than done. Which is why we asked her for the advice she gives her clients to help them ease up, wind down, and fall asleep. (Pensiero also led the Buffy Sleep Sanctuary at our most recent In goop Health. We tucked under the sustainable comforter and let her work her magic. It was a snooze—in the best possible way.)

TIP 1

A FEW MINUTES OF BREATHWORK

“There are various types,” Pensiero says. “I use ones geared toward mental clarity, physical relaxation, and sleep.” Follow these steps: Inhale through the nose as the belly rises and exhale through the mouth as the belly falls. “You are turning off the fight-flight-or-freeze response and getting the body relaxed and ready for sleep,” says Pensiero, who suggests pairing this breathing exercise with either a mantra or a visualization “to up the relaxation factor.”

TIP 2

SIMPLE MANTRA

While you’re doing the breathwork, close your eyes and visualize that you’re inhaling relaxation and exhaling tension. Think: “My mind is calm, and my body is relaxed. I am at peace. I welcome sleep into my being. And I am love,” says Pensiero, who recommends closing your eyes and imagining soothing light surrounding you and flowing through your body.

TIP 3

A CLOUDLIKE COMFORTER

The shell of this comforter is made of hypoallergenic eucalyptus fiber, which makes it light and breathable. “It feels like I’m sleeping on a cloud,” says Pensiero. “It’s amazing.”

BUFFY SUSTAINABLE COMFORTER,
Buffy, starting at $120

TIP 4

AN EARLY DINNER

Try to avoid food for at least two hours before bed. “It’s hard for the body to wind down and fall asleep if it is digesting food,” says Pensiero. “If you are having trouble sleeping, I recommend weaning yourself off of caffeine, alcohol, and processed foods,” she adds. “The clearer your system, the more in tune you will be with your body—and learning to listen to your body and its needs is crucial.”

TIP 5

STRICT(ER) PHONE RULES

Turn it off. Or even better: Put it in the other room. Less screen time is a big one to help us wind down. “The light from our screens disrupts the body’s natural melatonin production,” says Pensiero. “It tricks the body into thinking it is daytime, which keeps us awake.”

TIP 6

CALMING SCENTS

“Sage and palo santo smudge sticks are great for calming down and clearing out negative energy,” says Pensiero, who also loves a good soak with natural salts and essential oils “to relax the muscles and soothe the body.”

GOOP BODY G.NITE BEDTIME BATH SOAK, goop, $35; INCAUSA PALO SANTO WOOD HAND-PRESSED INCENSE, goop, $12