Techniques for sleeping well


I wonder what methods others use for ensuring good sleep? In particular I'm interested in what to focus on once in bed rather than preparing for sleep.

I have read preparing for sleep referred to as sleep hygiene before, which includes things such as not doing heavy exercise near bedtime and not being near bright lights (there are apps for phones and computers which dim the screen light when the sun goes down (or when you want it to), though turning computers off a while before bed would be better). Also, going to bed and getting up the same times each day is good.

Something I do right before bed is to read something not very interesting (so that it won't stimulate my mind) and then go to bed once my eyes start to close. Once in bed, a supposedly good tactic is to visualise a calming place in great detail in order to keep your mind from worrying about or thinking through things (which is more stimulating). I find it hard to keep my mind focused on visualisations so I've been trying counting in foreign languages which worked well for a while but not so well lately.

Another thing to do in order to prepare for sleep is to sort out everything that is worrying you before bedtime, so that you won't need to think about it, or you can at least make plans for what to do about things that are bothering you and write them down. I find this very helpful, as there is no need to worry about things when you have already decided the best course of action for them. Dale Carnegie's book 'How to Stop Worrying and Start Living' is a book I like that has more advice on managing worries.