Psychotherapist. Coach. Consultant.

I spent 10 years lying awake in bed

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I spent approximately 10 years lying awake in bed.  3:00 a.m. – bam, I would wake up and be up for the rest of the night.  I would begin to think of everything that was bothering me or a song that I liked.  It didn’t matter if I was stressed or calm.  I would be awakened  every night like clockwork (no pun intended).  I tried OTC drugs to beat the band. Nothing worked.  I felt doomed to spend the rest of my natural life feeling like crap because I wasn’t sleeping

 

My husband kept reminding me that in medieval times people would always awaken at night.  They would call this first sleep.  I didn’t care what they called it.  I was sick of waking up.  I was  done with having bags under my eyes and being miserable the entire next day.

 

I started to research to find ways to help me sleep through the night.  Doctors recommend 6.5-8 hours of shut eye a night.   I will share with you ten of the most effective things that I did to help me get those recommended hours.  I may not get a perfect night’s sleep every night, but now I do most nights. The tips that I am sharing are ones that have actually helped me recover from insomnia.

10 tips to get you sleeping like a baby:

Avoid caffeine, alcohol and soda – All of these substances will either keep you awake or wake you up during the night.  It is best to avoid them early in the day in order to have a restful night.

Nest– Make your bed as comfortable as possible.  Keep your room completely dark, this signals to the brain that it is time to sleep.

Keep it cool – Keep the room cool, this will keep you from overheating  and waking you in the night.

Take a warm bath before bedtime – This will relieve tension and start to wind your body down for sleep.

Get up and go to sleep around the same time every day – Our brains love routine and the routine of awakening and sleeping will give a signal to the brain when it’s time to be awake and when it is time to shut down.

All screens, including the television, need to be shut down– The activity and the light will signal to the brain that it is time to be active.

Don’t read –  Instead listen to relaxing music or a guided meditation.

Alternate nostril breathing –  You can google this or watch it on You Tube.  Anyone who has taken a yoga class has done this type of breathing.  The breathing  activates one hemisphere at a time.  This is very relaxing to the brain and the nervous system.

Drink warm milk with nutmeg – The milk is comforting to your body and the nutmeg gives additional warmth.  Again, it is all about  relaxing yourself.

Essential oils – The smell of lavender calms the body and the mind, it can help if you spray the scent on your pillow or use it in a diffuser.
I know the frustration of those who suffer with insomnia.  Sleep will improve your mood, help your concentration and act against aging.  Try one or all of these tips and let me know what works.  ZZZZzzzz

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