Mental Wealth Challenge: Day 1

The featured image was received via WhatsApp without any source credited for this wonderful list. I love this list because of the simplicity, yet profound value that it holds. For this reason I decided to promote it as a mental wealth challenge, because I believe that implementing this will most certainly increase the wealth of your mental abilities and naturally counteract the feelings of stress or dis-ease in your life. Why not join me on this challenge?

Day One: Go to bed 1 hour earlier than usual

The benefits of a good night’s rest cannot be over-emphasised, but that doesn’t mean much for someone that may be struggling to get to bed in the first place. It’s easy to get into bed, but not always so easy to fall asleep.

In fact, for some, it is even difficult just to get to bed. Lazying on the couch until you’re too exhausted to keep your eyes open, or distracting yourself with some mundane activity is a sure sign that you are averse to getting into bed to begin with. There are a number of reasons for this, some of which could include not having a sense of comfort, not wanting to cuddle up against your partner, or maybe just feeling like your life is drifting away and sleep just makes that drift happen faster.

Whatever your reason is, you need to break that cycle if you hope to be more mentally alert, and generally more inclined towards facing the day ahead. If your bedroom is not a welcoming place to be, now would be a good time to try to get to grips with what it is that makes it unpleasant for you, so that you can change that and start enjoying the peace and comfort that bedrooms are supposed to offer (among other things, of course).

Struggling to fall asleep?

Insomnia once was a friend of mine. I used to get to bed totally exhausted, but then found myself tossing and turning, or simply forcing my eyes closed while my brain was wide awake, hoping that sleep would overtake me at some point. The more I thought about sleep, the more elusive it became, until I eventually got out of bed at two o’clock in the morning to go for a drive through the quiet streets at night, eventually returning home around four o’clock so that I could try to squeeze in 2 hours’ of sleep before needing to wake up and start the whole daily routine again.

That was until I discovered a fool-proof way to pass out. While laying on my pillow, I noticed that my tongue was often pressed against the back of my front teeth, and my jaw was often clenched. If I listened closely, in the dead of the night, I noticed a very subtle humming sound similar to a vibration resonating close to my ear that was pressed against the pillow. The moment I relaxed my jaw, the sound went away. Clenched my jaw again, and it was back.

After experimenting a little, I discovered the following secret that has worked for me and pretty much everyone else that I have recommended it to since then. Now I am able to fall asleep within a few minutes. The technique is really simple, but only if you do exactly as I say.

The Technique

Start by observing what your tongue is doing. Is it pressing against the back of your teeth, is it tense, it is feeling thick or does it feel like it is filling your entire mouth? If so, chances are good that your jaw is clenched as well. Not always clenched so hard that you feel its strain, but just hard enough as if restraining yourself from wanting to express your thoughts or feelings about what is going on in your mind.

When you notice these symptoms, simply allow your tongue to relax. Note I said allow it to relax and not relax it. The difference is, when you focus on relaxing your tongue, you’re not only trying to instruct it to do something that it can do naturally, but you are also giving your conscious thoughts work to do. You’re trying to fall asleep, remember? So giving your brain extra work is not what you want to be doing. So again, allow your tongue to relax.

Do the same for your jaw. Just feel it un-clench itself. It is common to feel yourself gasp lightly for air when this happens. When you tongue is relaxed and your jaw is no longer tense, you’ll find that your breathing goes a little deeper. And all you are doing throughout this process is simply allowing your tongue and your jaw to relax. Allow it to just be, without any need to instruct it to relax.

The humming from your jaw will have stopped, and the thoughts rushing through your mind will subside. Sleep will follow shortly thereafter, but only if you’re not laying there actively waiting for sleep to arrive. That’s just giving your brain work to do again.

Final Thoughts

Sorry, I couldn’t resist that pun. Allow your tongue and jaw to relax. In fact, allow either one to relax and the other will follow naturally.

This technique is excellent to calm down during times of distress, or if you feel a bout of anxiety coming on. If you are trying to talk to someone that is experiencing an anxiety attack, gently encourage them to follow this technique and you’ll find their symptoms will subside, or at the least, reduce in intensity as well.

Sweet dreams!

P.S. Come back in the morning and tell me if this helped you or not. 🙂

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