Monday, June 2, 2014
What to do if You Have Insomnia NOW
You’ve heard all the advice—set a regular bedtime, release your stress through exercise, reserve your bedroom as a place to sleep—but you’re awake at one in the morning so you need help now. You can't delay. What options are available for an insomniac in the middle of the night? Get out of bed. It's tempting to stay in bed and just keeping trying to force yourself to sleep, but you'll probably just work yourself up more from all the trying. Think of going to sleep as landing a plane; you missed the run way the first time, so you need to circle around and try to bring it in for a landing nice and smooth this time. Your body has gotten used to falling asleep at a certain time, and if for some reason you missed that time, or you were too stimulated at the time you usually fall asleep, you may have to jolt your body into thinking it has another chance. Heat up some milk. It’s true: warm milk will make you sleepy. If that idea makes you gag, try some decaffeinated tea such as Chamomile or Valerian tea with a touch of honey. Engage in a quiet, restful activity. Keep the lights dim and do something that will make you sleepy. Refuse to watch TV, play electronics, or work on your computer; the electronic stimulation will keep you up. You'll do better with something like reading, crocheting, or just thinking positive thoughts. Come up with a plan. If your mind is racing because you're concerned about something, try writing out solutions or planning around the issue. Don't make calls, send emails, or take any action; write out a plan regarding what you can do and what you must leave to others. After this, head back to bed and see if you can’t beat your insomnia yet. Sweet dreams!