For when you are actually in bed:
- If your mind starts to race, slow it down with measured breathing. Focusing on and controlling your breath is a basic way to influence how you feel and think. For example: Headspace. com offers meditation and relaxation instructions that are geared to helping you sleep. There is a 14 day free trial and then costs about $12.99 a month.
2. Stand on the platform and watch the trains go by. If you have troublesome thoughts, see them as train cars going by while you simply observe them from a safe platform. Don’t get on the train, just watch the cars as they move by and out of sight.
3. If you don’t fall asleep after 20 minutes, get out of bed. Transition back to your wind down activities until you feel sleepy again. Some people worry about getting up being stimulating but you are already awake and mentally aroused. You don’t want to continually lie there which reinforces the wrong associations from your bed.
4 .If you wake up during the night, the same “rules of bed” apply. If you can’t return to sleep quickly, get up and resume wind down activities. However, if you are older and/or have chronic pain, it may be unsafe to move about your home in the middle of the night. In that case, sit up or turn yourself around so that your head is at the bottom of the bed and your feet near your pillow. Stay there until you get sleepy,. then return to your normal sleep position.
5. If you have a spouse or partner, accommodating your partner can make it hard to implement the above strategies. Maybe sleep apart for a few weeks if you are suffering from insomnia. Do your reconditioning in a guest room if you have one. Or you might set up a comfy place in another room and share quality time there and then go to separate rooms.
If you have concerns about sleeping and you think hypnosis might help, please feel free to contact me at 361.442.9590 or [email protected]