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How to meditate in bed to get sleep?

When I was about 8 or 9 years old I can clearly remember meditating on my bed. And I didn’t even know what meditation was.

It was a sunny day and I was lying on my back, looking up at a clear blue sky through the window next to my bed.

I was totally relaxed but aware at the same time – allowing thoughts to drift in and out.

If my parents saw me they would have probably said, “Why don’t you ride around the block on your bike, instead of wasting your time daydreaming.”

Daydreaming was frowned on in those days.

I can remember it as clearly as if it was yesterday but I can only recall doing it that one single time.

Perhaps that was the only time I did it.

Back then in the UK most people hadn’t even heard of the practice of meditation until the Beatles got into it a couple of years later.

So the experience was mostly forgotten – only to be remembered briefly.

And it wasn’t until I was much older that I realised what it was.

I now meditate regularly in bed in the morning.

It’s easier than sitting in a chair in a cold room, especially in the winter months.

But if I listen to the “voice” in my head that says, “Don’t meditate today, it’s too cold – stay in bed in the warm and sleep for another half hour,” I know my day won’t go as well.

So I’d rather meditate in bed to centre myself before I go out and face the stress and strain of life.

If you develop the habit of meditating in bed in the morning the annoying, frustrating and stressful things that you’ll face will run off you like water off a duck’s back.

But, if you get annoyed frustrated upset or angry, it could ruin your whole day.

And if you get really angry it might ruin your whole month.

A Chinese proverb says, “If you are patient in one moment of anger, you will escape a hundred days of sorrow.”

But it’s even more serious because if you get angry in the wrong place at the wrong time at the wrong person, it could ruin your whole life.

How to meditate in bed: Here’s how I do it

When the alarm on my phone goes off, I get out of bed, walk over and silence it.

I then set the timer for 20 minutes, get back into bed and sit upright without my head being supported and with my legs straight out in front of me.

Don’t lie back down as you’ll probably drift off to sleep again.

Warning: Meditatiing in bed if you have a bad back

If you have a bad back you may not be able to sit in this position.

But you can try this instead:

Put a pillow under your knees which will take the pressure off your lower back.

And, instead of sitting upright, lean back slightly with your head resting on the head-board or a pillow.

But if you can’t sit up at all, due to illness for example, you can meditate lying on your back.

Although it’s not normally a good idea to meditate lying down as it’s too easy to fall asleep, in this case it’s ok.

So lie on your back, place your hands on your stomach and touch your fingers together so that the tip of the first finger of the left hand touches the tip of the first finger of the right hand, the tip of the second finger on the left hand touches the tip of the second finger on the right hand.

And do the same for all fingers.

You may not be able to touch all four fingers and the thumbs together easily, but it’s ok if you only manage to join 3.

Then, become aware of each pair of fingers in turn by concentrating on the pressure at the point where the fingers touch.

Also, if you’re lying on your back, you can draw your legs up so that your feet are flat on the bed. You may find this more comfortable as it’ll take the pressure off your lower back. You can also try putting a pillow under your knees.

Now, you’re lying on your back, your hands are resting on your stomach with your fingers touching and you’re concentrating on the tips of your fingers – at the point where they meet.

When you get the hang of that, concentrate on the middle of your forehead at the same time. (I go into more detail on this method in How to Meditate Deeply).

If you find it tiring with the soles of your feet on the bed and your knees in the air, you can slowly push one leg forward so that it’s now flat on the bed.

You now have one leg flat on the bed and the other one with the knee in the air.

You can also change which leg is flat and which leg is raised but try to have at least one leg is raised at all times to take the pressure of your lower back.

If you have insomnia and have trouble getting to sleep you can try this method whilst lying down, and drift off to sleep directly from your meditation.

When you go to sleep from meditation you’ll find the quality of your sleep is much better.
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