In the time of the cursed allure of infinite scrolling and full seasons of TV shows available to be streamed in just a few clicks, a good night’s sleep has become a treasure that remains elusive to most of us. But what if we tell you that there’s a way you can get the benefits of restful sleep without actually dozing off? If this intrigues you, then you need to give ‘Non-Sleep Deep Rest’ (NSDR) a go.
Everything to know about ‘Non-Sleep Deep Rest’
What is ‘Non-Sleep Deep Rest’?
Essentially, NSDR is similar to deep sleep but without actual sleep. It involves going into a meditative state where your mind rests but you’re still conscious and aware of your environment.
Google CEO Sundar Pichai is a subscriber of NSDR. In an interview, Pichai claimed NSDR is his go-to technique to unwind after a long day.
The wellness practice is not new as it is very similar to the yogic practice of Yoga Nidra. The act allows you to rest and recharge your mind easily and efficiently.
NSDR isn’t intended to induce sleep but to help you achieve a meditative state where you’re nearly awake but your awareness of time and space isn’t entirely under your control. The term was coined by neuroscientist and researcher Andrew Huberman who is also a professor in the Department of Neurobiology at Stanford University’s School of Medicine.
What are the benefits of ‘Non-Sleep Deep Rest’?
Aside from helping you feel rested and rejuvenated, NSDR can help your brain learn more quickly and increase memory retention. Those who practice NSDR regularly have also reported that they sleep better at night because of their relaxed state.
A study also claimed that NSDR can have the same impact on the body as 3-4 hours of restorative sleep. It is also a cost and time-efficient way to relax, which makes it ideal for our busy schedules.
How to practice ‘Non-Sleep Deep Rest’?
Two of the most efficient ways you can practice NSDR is through hypnotherapy or Yoga Nidra, For the former, you would need the help of a professional therapist and the latter would require assisted meditation that can help your mind achieve a state of rest. You can also do what Pichai does, which is look for NSDR tracks, through podcasts or YouTube videos, that can guide you through the process. All you need is a quiet room where you can practice it without any interruption. Additionally, you can include weighted blankets, scented candles, dimmed lights and white noise tracks, based on your preferences.
Experts recommend practising it during the day so that you can reap its benefits throughout the day. They also advise fixing a specific time for it so that your mind and body can be trained well.
Will you try practising the ‘Non-Sleep Deep Rest’ technique to unwind today?