The app Gentle Wakeup can support you in slowing down your breath and clearing your mind by showing a circle which is changing in size. Please note that the app is not a medical product and that it only uses natural methods to support you. But with this natural sleep aid it may be able to relieve you from sleeping pills, hyperventilation, or any sleep disorders.
Gentle Wakeup is already used by over 300,000 people to improve their sleep & wakeup. Whether you have a sleep disorder, simply want to fall asleep quicker, fall asleep more relaxed or in a more natural way, the app can support you with this.
In case you do not have the app yet you can download it from here:
What is a normal time to fall asleep?
Most people need between 10 and 25 minutes to fall asleep. According to a survey from the National Center for Health Statistics the average time of an American to fall asleep in 2007 was 22 minutes.
What can be the reason if I can not fall asleep?
If you need longer than this time then there can be one or more reasons for this. Some examples:
- You are simply not tired
- You are sleeping too much
- You are going to bed hungry
- You take your work into bed
- You are exposing yourself to bright light at evening
- You drink caffeine or alcohol at evening
- You have not exercised enough during the day
- You have exercised in the evening
- There is too much glowing light in your room at night
- You hear a disruptive sound
- You can not stop thinking
- You have a sleep disorder caused by stress, jet lag, depression, migraine, headache, motivation, tinnitus, insomnia, burn-out, autism, PTSD, anxiety disorder, ADHD, mental disorder
If you are having difficulties falling asleep then you should consult a doctor to clarify the exact reasons.
How do I use the app “Gentle Wakeup” for slowing down my breath and clearing my mind?
Here are the 3 steps to follow:
Step 1: Prepare your room
When it is dark in the evening go into your bedroom and turn out the light. Take a look at your window. Is there any light from street lamps or other light sources reaching your room? Make sure your curtain can prevent this light reaching your room. Our cardiac rhythm is mostly influenced by light and humans can not sleep well if there is too much light during the night.
Now check for light sources in your room. No light source from any electronic devices should be so intense that they light up the room even if it is just a little light. Switch off unnecessary small light sources or paste them over.
Are there any unsolved problems in your head? Thinks you need to remember? Write all unsolved problems on a ToDo list to get them out of the head.
Put your tablet or smartphone with the app “Gentle Wakeup” on a night stand beside your bed. The device should be pointed into the direction of your head in the bed. Some covers can be bend this way that the device is lying on the edge. You can also buy a holder for your device. Best is to buy a holder which can also charge your device over night so that you are fully charged in the morning.
Step 2: Use the sleep aid function of the sleep timer
Tap on the timer icon to start the sleep timer. The screen will turn to a red sunset immediately. And you will hear a nice night owl from time to time.
Now tap on the first-aid icon to activate the sleep aid function. Any time or alarm information will be hidden to remove the pressure from you of not falling asleep. A circle will be shown and change in size. This indicates the breath pattern you should follow. When the circle is getting bigger then you should breathe in and when the circle is getting smaller you should breathe out.
The circle can speed up your falling asleep time by:
- Clearing your mind: By focusing on the circle how it moves you can clear your mind from thoughts and worries which you gathered during the day. Your mind gets to a rest and you will suddenly notice how tired you really are.
- Having a long exhalation: The long exhalation phase will reduce the carbon dioxide content in your blood making you tired more quickly.
- Slowing down your breath: The circle will start with your current breath rate and slow down over time. This will reduce your heart rate and get you relaxed.
Step 3: Do nothing but watch the circle and follow the breath pattern
Every time the circle starts to get bigger you should start to breathe in as well. Do not breath in more air or less air than you feel comfortable with. The circle only indicates the timing and not the air volume. When the circle has reached its maximum size you should also have reached your maximum breath and should be ready to breath out. If you have reached your maximum breath earlier than the circle than you need to breathe in slower.
You can measure your current breath rate in the app so that the circle can start with it. When you do that you should breathe as calmly as it is pleasant for you to get you relaxed quickly.
The breath frequency will slow down over a period of 30 minutes. Try to follow the breath rhythm as long as you feel comfortable with it. Otherwise you can adjust the final breath rate and the time it should be reached in the app settings.
When your eyes get tired then close them. The app plays two guitar tones as well for indicating the breath pattern. A higher tone indicates when to breathe in and a lower tone indicates when to breathe out. Continue to follow the breath pattern by the guitar tones.
With the clear mind and the relaxed heart rate you should fall asleep soon.
How can I adjust the sleep aid for my personal needs?
There are several configuration possibilities for the sleep aid function. You can find them in the sub menus of the sleep timer and the power nap settings.
Tap on the gear icon when there is no sleep timer or alarm active and then on the sub settings for the “Sleep Timer”.
The most important settings are the starting breath frequency and the final breath frequency. You can set these values manually but the app will also ask you to determine your starting breath frequency. All you have to do is to tap on a button each time you start to breathe in. When you tap the button the second time you will already get your current frequency and each time you press it again the value will get more precise. For your starting frequency you you should breathe as calmly as it is pleasant for you.
It is also important that you configure your personal sound volume. Whether you find a sound pleasant or disturbing mainly depends on the volume you hear it.
You can also set a longer or shorter duration for the sleep timer depending on your needs. On default the sound and light start to fade out from the beginning but you can configure them to keep a constant brightness and volume for a while. When they start to decrease you can set the speed in which they should reach their final brightness and volume.
You can also choose if you want to start the sleep aid automatically each time you start the sleep timer or power nap function.
You can either determine your current breath each time before the sleep aid starts or you work with a fixed starting frequency and switch to the circle immediately.
You also need to decide what the app should do when the sleep timer is finished. If the app simply returns to the main screen with the sun to wait until the display turns off automatically then this may disturb your sleep. That is why the default option is to turn the display off by the app without any intense light in between. Another possibility is that the app switches into the night mode automatically which will show a night clock.
Continue reading: How to sleep through the night with the app “Gentle Wakeup”
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The sleep aid function is also available in the separate app “Sleep Fast – fall asleep quickly”