If I had but a measly dollar for every minute I’ve spent staring at my dark ceiling through long hours
of sleeplessness, I’m fairly certain I could retire to a secluded island somewhere in the tropics.
Oh how many nights have I wasted counting those annoying sheep, repeating the broken-record bits
of tunes and lyrics, and trying with futile desperation to clear my buzzing brain of worrisome issues.
So how did I deal with this nocturnal monster known as “Insomnia”?
The answer, according to the books, articles, and Google searches was (for my situation, at least) as simple as the proverbial pie, and was staring me right in the face while I was staring at my nighttime ceiling: MY HEAD WAS STUFFED WITH STRESS, THUS NOT PERMITTING THE ‘TRIGGER-MECHANISM’ OF MY SUBCONSCIOUS TO KICK IN AND ALLOW ME TO FALL ASLEEP!
Please forgive the caps, but I felt the need to ‘shout out’ that simple, “Why didn’t I think of that?” answer.
The question remained, however, What techniques could I use to cope with this condition and overcome it?
Falling asleep is, of course a completely natural function of the brain, and (in most minor cases) can be
engaged without serious difficulty. Here are a few sleeping techniques I encountered and used (with 100% success, may I add) in my search for slumber. As a disclaimer, I need to mention that these techniques
are intended for minor, stress-related conditions only. For more serious/acute conditions, you should consult a sleep disorder professional for evaluation and treatment.
Tell yourself: “I want to stay awake”. Yes, for real. This weird, reverse technique tricks the brain into ‘giving up the fight’, and falling asleep! I’m not sure how or why, but it works… Trust me! Another useful technique
is to simply surrender to your senses, allowing whatever sounds, thoughts, etc. that occur in your head to manifest and drift past, neither preventing them from appearing, nor holding them captive, but simply letting them float past like the clouds. These techniques take a bit of time and effort to ‘master’, but they truly do work if you want them to. One final trick that can but doesn’t always work (for me, anyway) is an ancient Chinese technique: Lace your fingers together with the fingers inside, like the old “Here’s the church, here’s the steeple” game, and place your hands on your sternum. This is a form of Chinese “acupressure”, and has worked for me on occasion. I offer no guarantees on these ideas, but yes, they worked for me.
Okay, so there you have it: My problem, and my personal solution. If you can relate, please give these techniques a try. They’re free, and they’re easy, so you have nothing to lose. Good luck in your search for elusive slumber, and I’ll (hopefully) see you in dreamland.