There are anecdotal evidence that mindfulness meditation may help with falling asleep. One such reference was about body scan mindfulness meditation in particular as found in the book “Search Inside Yourself” where it writes …
“A second benefit of body scan is it helps you sleep. I know that because in MBSR, participants practice body scan lying down, and in every class, at least one person ends up snoring (with everyone else thinking, “Stop snoring. I’m trying to meditate, damn it!”).”
MBSR refers to Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction. And that may be one reason why it is conducive to sleep is that it helps reduce stress.
There are many forms of mediation, one of which is mindful meditation where you place your attentional focus on something (usually your breath). But in body scan you place your attentional focus on various parts of your body to top to bottom (or from bottom to top as you like) — meaning from the top of your head to your toes.
Focus your attention to the top of your head. Notice any sensation or lack of sensation. Then focus your attention on your back of head, your forehead, your cheeks, your jaws, shoulders, stomach, arms, legs, toes, etc. I’ve missed a lot of areas. And don’t do that fast. But you get the idea.
Let your attention rest on each part for a while noticing any feeling or sensation in that area. Is your forehead scrunched? Is there tightness in your jaw? And so on. Many parts may have no sensation. That’s okay. You just note in your attentional mind that there is no sensation.
Inevitably your mind will wander to other things (because you think the body scan is too boring) — like to work or thinking about past conversation or events of the day (be they pleasant or unpleasant). As soon as you notice that you are not paying attention to the body scan anymore, pull your attention back to your body scan. This flexing of the attention back to the point of focus is the core of meditation. Nothing wrong with mind wandering. This should happen and is natural and is perfectly acceptable. The practice of pulling the attention back is the practice of meditation. Mediation is not to free yourself of thoughts or to empty your mind, as is commonly thought of by beginners.
Hopefully you remember where you left off in the body scan when you lost attention from it. Or just pick a place or start again.
Sometimes when I do the body scan lying down in my bed right at my bed time when it is completely dark, I usually am unable to complete the body scan because I would have fallen off to sleep before I do. Hope that happens to you to.
Note that I write that it is in my bed (which I have trained by body to associate with sleep, because I never read, watch TV, or do work in bed). And it is completely dark. And at my regular bedtime. These things, as have been written in other posts, are also conducive to sleep.