Author Topic: Finding it difficult to sleep  (Read 4065 times)

MgoSam

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Finding it difficult to sleep
« on: June 05, 2014, 01:08:37 AM »
Lately my mind is still worked up at night and I am having trouble sleeping. I have been prescribed amiben which helps, but that is more a crutch than a solution. I have tried meditation but that relaxes me a little but doesn't help me sleep. I am now trying to meditate in the morning, but does anyone have any advice or anything that they do that will help them sleep better? I have also tried chamomile tea and that hasn't done the trick either.

kyanamerinas

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Re: Finding it difficult to sleep
« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2014, 01:57:41 AM »
this is going to sound odd but a well. i focus closely on my breathing and slowing my heart rate. i find that consciously slowing my breathing right down also lowers my heart rate (it certainly feels like that) and this really helps me drop off.

T-Rex

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Re: Finding it difficult to sleep
« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2014, 02:47:23 AM »
I got a little MP3 player loaded with meditation type stuff, it has music w/ comforting visualization/breathing exercises. I put on a sleep mask and put in the headphones. When I use it, it seems to put me to sleep in as little as 2 minutes. I don't know how it works, but it does. I have literally never finished listening to one track since the first day I got it.

Before that I had some success with melatonin and "sleep hygiene" tricks.

 http://sleepfoundation.org/ask-the-expert/sleep-hygiene

Before all those things, I used Ambien and had the same feeling as you.

little_owl

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Re: Finding it difficult to sleep
« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2014, 03:41:22 AM »
A few thoughts:

1) Ensure you are winding down in the hour before you get into bed.  No TV, no tablets, no electronics.  Read a book, drink tea, finish you chores for the day but stay away from things that get your mental gears turning.

2) Write down your worries / thoughts.  Have you tried journaling before bed?  Depending on what your mind is reeling about, getting it down on paper and out of your brain canhelp.  When this happens to me, I am usually reeling about work stuff (hence my ERE goals!). I will write down what I need to do / think about in the morning and try not to think about it further.

3) How active are you?  I work out in the morning, and sometimes do a run / bike ride in the evening and by the time my head hits the pillow for my 8 (or 9!) hours, I am usually exhausted and ready for my 40 winks.

Good luck...good sleep is as important as diet and exercise in my opinion!  I hope you find a set of techniques that work for you.

Tieke

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Re: Finding it difficult to sleep
« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2014, 03:57:20 AM »
I'm with little_owl - I find the winding down routine essential if I'm going to sleep.   I'd add to this that when you hit the magic winding down hour, it helps a lot if you dim the lights (or turn some off if you don't have a dimmer).  This helps to cue your brain properly that it's night-time, since our fully lit houses disrupt the natural cue that occurs when the sun goes down.

It also helps to get into super comfy clothing (PJs and a dressing gown will do it) at this time of evening so that you're in ultimate relaxation mode.

If you create a ritual where you're doing a bunch of these things every night, you will soon build a positive habit as your body starts to recognise that these cues collectively signal that it's time for sleep.

Lately I've also started doing stretches late in the evening with music and candlelight (and all electric lights turned off) - this is really effective as well!

El Limon

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Re: Finding it difficult to sleep
« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2014, 06:30:07 AM »
I have tried taking many things over the years, but for me it helps to eliminate the following sleep deprivers from my diet: chocolate, coffee, soda, alcohol, nicotine, iced tea. 

Replace with water, milk, vegetables, lean protein, and daily exercise. An evening swim usually floors me by about 8:30. Good luck. It's really a matter of finding what your body responds to.

soccerluvof4

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Re: Finding it difficult to sleep
« Reply #6 on: June 05, 2014, 07:31:41 AM »
Journal before you bed. Dont try to make sense of it but just right down whatever comes into your mind even if its scary as the weirdest things do. When i get done I cant even read what i wrote and no one else could but I find it cleansing and i toss in the garbage. It really works well clearing your subconscious mind. Its highly recommended for people that suffer from anxiety and OCD problems.

ace1224

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Re: Finding it difficult to sleep
« Reply #7 on: June 05, 2014, 07:41:53 AM »
Lately my mind is still worked up at night and I am having trouble sleeping. I have been prescribed amiben which helps, but that is more a crutch than a solution. I have tried meditation but that relaxes me a little but doesn't help me sleep. I am now trying to meditate in the morning, but does anyone have any advice or anything that they do that will help them sleep better? I have also tried chamomile tea and that hasn't done the trick either.

i am a legit diagnosed insomniac with a prescription of 10mg valium for sleep.  i hate the idea of being addicted so i very rarely take it. 
i find a routine helps me the best.  i clean up, i take a shower, i read a little.  i know this is going to sound crass but i'm very serious, i find that when i'm too antsy and really need to pass out an orgasm always helps.  whether my boyfriend helps me or not is irrelevant.  i'm always sleepy after those.

scottydog

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Re: Finding it difficult to sleep
« Reply #8 on: June 05, 2014, 08:11:51 AM »
Journal before you bed. Dont try to make sense of it but just right down whatever comes into your mind even if its scary as the weirdest things do. When i get done I cant even read what i wrote and no one else could but I find it cleansing and i toss in the garbage. It really works well clearing your subconscious mind. Its highly recommended for people that suffer from anxiety and OCD problems.

+1

I found it especially helpful to do a sort of guided journaling called The Work: http://www.thework.com.  It's basically a set of 4 questions that you ask yourself about any stressful problem.  I did buy some of the e-books but you don't have to; there's more than enough free information online and many of the books are readily available from the library.  I feel a distinct reduction in stress and increase in peace each time I do it.

This is a very personal thing, but when I tried journaling I found myself investing a lot of energy in writing about a given problem and justifying my feelings.  When I frame a problem within the 4 questions of The Work, I get deeper and longer lasting peace much more quickly.

FLBiker

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Re: Finding it difficult to sleep
« Reply #9 on: June 05, 2014, 08:22:37 AM »
Lots of great suggestions here.  I second exercise and staying away from screens.

I'm also becoming a big proponent of meditation.  Like you, I meditate in the morning, but I've found it really helps me sleep.  Specifically, I've gotten better at steering my mind away from discursive / obsessive thinking.  The practice in meditation of bringing my mind away from thinking and back to the breath also works (quite well, recently) when I'm trying to sleep.  That said, it took a little time.  I sit for 15-30 minutes every morning, and I'd say it took a few months before I started to notice my sleep improving.

rocksinmyhead

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Re: Finding it difficult to sleep
« Reply #10 on: June 05, 2014, 08:46:09 AM »
seconding the journaling/list-making and orgasm suggestions. I usually don't have a hard time falling asleep because as little_owl described, I'm pretty active and usually pretty exhausted by the time I get to bed. the times I do have a hard time falling asleep is because, as you described, my mind is racing. if I dump everything onto a piece of paper, especially in the form of "here is a specific plan of attack/list of things I will do tomorrow to get the stress out of my brain", it really helps.

scottydog, I'm definitely going to check out that website!

GuitarStv

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Re: Finding it difficult to sleep
« Reply #11 on: June 05, 2014, 09:12:44 AM »
In addition to the good suggestions above . . . get up at the same time every morning and go to bed at the same time every night.  Don't mess with this schedule on weekends!  After a few weeks of doing this your body adjusts it's rhythms and will start naturally making you feel sleepy when you should go to bed.