Scenario: You wake up at 3 a.m. but can't get back to sleep
Solution: See yourself somewhere else
Too wound up to get winks? Take a few slow, deep breaths as you picture yourself in a pleasant place, a scene that makes you feel happy and content, such as a sunny beach, cool forest or other quiet, stress-free place.
Why it works: Studies show visualizing places of soothing beauty naturally increase the body’s production of the sleep-inducing hormone melatonin to help you start snoozing again. Plus, breathing deeply nudges your noggin to produce calming alpha waves, electrical impulses that relax your brain, cutting your stress hormone production by as much as half, according to Cornell researchers. “All in all, this combo can help you fall back asleep in as little as five minutes,” says Keith Deorio, M.D., medical director of The Deorio Wellness Center in Santa Monica, CA.