For as long as I can remember, I’ve had nights where falling asleep has been a problem. Back when I was a kid, sometimes I’d just be wide awake and I’d go downstairs and just sit with my parents as I waited to feel sleep taking over. When I got older, I realised when these nights would occur and tried to construct methods to ease my mind. Now here I am, however old I am, still with that very same dilemma. There are many people out there who can get snuggled up into bed and fall asleep whenever they please, or pull out a nap from nowhere and get back into things straight after. Me, I’ve had a harder time.
Now it’s not full blown insomnia, no way. I can sleep. I can sleep for a long time. But getting to sleep is a whole other ballpark. This is because of a concept that will make sense to some, and not to others; I have a loud mind.
The problem lies that when you’re falling asleep, you’re trying to drift off into a peaceful, relaxing feeling of nirvana. Cloud nine. Just you and your dreams. I’ve found the way to reach this state is to let your mind drift, until it naturally forms your dreams. This sounds like it should be easy, but unfortunately the train of thought can barrage it’s way through your dreams like it’s got places to be.
When a thought get’s caught on the train, you’re going to be caught in that thought for a while. Thinking the same thing doesn’t drift off anywhere, it just gets more and more imprinted in your head. The worst thing you can do in this situation is to actually THINK about it -spend brainpower on working things out about it. When this happens, you’re stuck because now your brain is working to keep this thought alive and if you just drop it all that work’s for waste. Do you really want to sleep? Or how about you thing long and hard about how you ignored that woman in the store when she said ‘hello’, and waved her away, and she muttered snarkily that ‘she was just saying hello’.
I know what you were playing at!
I know you are just there to sell perfume!
Don’t you dare try to make me feel bad for rejecting your marketing strategy, I was EXCEEDINGLY busy trying to read up on what colour blazers go with what colour trousers! That stuff has it’s own Reddit!
Anyway, the worse thoughts are regret. Thoughts that can get stuck in your mind are the simulations of ‘what could’ve been.’ Imagine I’ve just painted a picture of a world made of clouds, with a rainbow arch and happy people all around. That’s the world. Now imagine the world we live in – a grey city with a railway arch and angry people all around. A stark difference, but the world of WCB is hard to let go of, and so it thrives in the head of a loud mind. Who would want to think about reality when you can imagine what if you really had bought that bitcoin three years ago? The yachts…
However, the most common are anxieties. Concerns. The things that you don’t want to forget lest you feel the repercussions. These roll around you’re brain because you don’t want to lose them! And they’re most common, because you can often have a different worry every day of the week. Consider the horror of dreading each night, not only worried about the next day, but also well aware you won’t get any sleep because of it. It’s the best way to treat anxiety, honestly. Exams used to feel the brunt of this.
But after the years, you develop your techniques to deal with these issues. And the best one for each of these cases is really simple:
Write it down.
Honestly, writing it down takes it out your head and puts it on paper. It literally moves it. The trouble is, sometimes I’m too tired to write, or I don’t even know what to write, but every time that I’ve written down what’s been stuck in my head I’ve felt a lot better and sleep has arrived much more naturally.
Or if writing isn’t your thing, talk to someone about your thoughts. As long as you somehow transfer your head to somewhere else, you’ll get the job done. You won’t forget anything if it’s written down, you can work out something the day after, you can make plans and affect those great anxieties tomorrow with help from your friends. And family if they’re alright.
Of course, if you’re a true insomniac then that’s a medical condition; I can’t help you with that but a medical professional might. That’s just my recommendation.
I really hate fashion. I just want to wear a light jacket! And I wear black trousers, come on! Throw me a bone!