Today's top tip on how to get a better night's sleep
I worked out that the problem was that once I was awake my mind would start running through hundreds of visual images, it would show me clips of me going out the back door and suddenly I'd ask myself 'did you lock the back door' and then images of the bowl I left out in the kitchen and my attention is drawn to the oven with its light on and again I ask myself 'is the oven off'. Then it would throw a random one at me, like how dreadful the picture of me in the passport is and my head would scream 'when was the last time you saw your passport?' Then there would be the flood of images of all the times I'd used my passport in the past 10 or so years before I got quietly out of bed. Frustrated and by now may I add, wide awake I would get up and go and try to find my passport.
At first I tried to put a TV in the room and leave it on all night because when I'm watching TV I have no problem falling asleep so long as I'm reclined. Unfortunately the TV was just too stimulating, either that or the programmes I was putting on for bed were just too interesting. That was working fine to help send me off to sleep but as I don't sleep alone and I have a young baby to listen out for leaving the TV on all night was not the solution to my problem of waking up in the middle of the night. So here's what I did.
I got a free app for my phone called custom sounds of nature and each night I play sounds like waves gently lapping onto a beach. You can set individual settings on it so it's not just the sound of the waves you can set it to play seagulls and foghorns off in the distance. You don't necessarily need an app like this you can play any sounds that are soothing to you, or even a relaxing radio station playing softly in the background.
Anything works so long as you can use the sounds to help picture yourself somewhere different, somewhere that interests you. Make sure you set the volume to a comfortable level for you to sleep through but will still be able to hear it when you wake up.
Every time you wake up immediately close your eyes again and imagine yourself somewhere really cool. It can be somewhere you've seen yourself, with your own two eyes, or somewhere you've created from fantasy. All you need to concentrate on is to make it somewhere you'd like to dream about. Then really concentrate on bringing that image to life to see if you can take your dreams there.
This technique really helps me, it helps me to get myself back to sleep because it keeps my over-active brain busy, it stops me from worrying about things, and allows me to stay relaxed in bed. It can't reduce the pain or the waking up at night but it usually works really well at getting me back to sleep in no time at all.
Try it out and see if it works for you too.
I find that being able to relax at any point in the day is beneficial to me as my brain is constantly on the go. It seems the trick for getting back to sleep at night is to work with my non-stop constantly active brain and 'actively' think about things in order to let my body drift back to sleep naturally. It seems the trick is to think about nice things rather than allowing your brain to do the usual 'what did I forget to do today'.
If you are like me and have a hyperactive, non-stop mind then this might work for you too. This technique might help to keep your thoughts positive to stop you from stressing yourself out. Hopefully you will be able to get back to sleep and maybe have an interesting dream while you're at it.