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Can’t Sleep? Your Music Library Can Help

Ironically, everyone’s worst nightmare happens when they can’t fall asleep. There’s nothing more stressful than tossing and turning all night, especially when you have a big day ahead of you. Not only will you feel the effect the next day, but regulating your overall sleep pattern is an essential tool in practicing a healthy lifestyle. According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, getting the right amount of sleep helps regulate your bodily functions, as well as protects your mental and physical health.

The next time a restless night gets the best of you, try turning to the sound of soothing music. According to sleep.org, bedtime listening can improve your overall sleep quantity and quality of sleep.  Stuck on what to listen to? Read on for some song and artist suggestions for your late-night playlist.

“Weightless” by the British band Marconi Union

This eight-minute, calming track, featuring guitar, piano, and natural soundscapes, was created in collaboration with sound therapists, specifically to decrease stress and blood pressure, according to the Huffington Post. This song has become extremely popular on Sound Cloud, and is the perfect tune to help you de-stress and relax.

“Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran

Spotify actually compiled a list of songs most likely to appear in bedtime playlists, and this slow jam made the list as one of the prominent songs! According to Jose Colon, author of The Sleep Diet: A Novel Approach to Insomnia, listening to soothing music like this can help slow down your breathing and heart rate to put you in the state of relaxation needed for sleep. “Thinking Out Loud” isn’t the only song Ed Sheeran has that is great for bedtime—Ed has a handful of other songs that would be great for bedtime.

Our two favorite John’s: Legend and Mayer

Both John Legend and John Mayer are known for creating soft, soothing music, which right before bed, would be exactly what you are looking for. I think we can all agree they’re both lullaby-singing angels.

Nature Recordings

If music you can sing along to is too distracting when you’re trying to get some shut eye, try listening to recordings of nature. According to health.com, researchers have found that sounds from nature physically alter the connections in our brains, helping our bodies relax. What could create a more peaceful environment than waves crashing against the shore, water flowing down a stream, or leaves softly rustling in the wind?

If you haven’t found anything that can quiet your mind late at night, hopefully these soft tunes will help. When digging for the perfect song to put you to sleep, remember that The National Sleep Foundation recommends looking for slower songs with a rhythm of about 60 to 80 beats per minute, and sticking to this routine every night to truly see positive sleep effects. Sweet dreams!

– Dharni Rao, Campus Ambassador, Rutgers University

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