Sunday, January 10, 2010

Stolen Sleep

My insomnia is back. Even writing that sentence makes me quiver. Insomnia is something I dealt with extensively a few years back as I made the leap and left the music industry. It wasn’t fun. If my experience this week is any indication it still isn’t the life of the party.

Over the last few years I have spent a lot of time thinking, reading and writing about sleep and all of its awesome, occasionally elusive, properties. I have worked hard to get to a place where I am able to sleep well most of the time. I try to keep a steady bedtime, although I give myself a little leeway on the weekend. It’s the same principle as with children – if you’re on a schedule you’ll just sleep so much better.

I also keep a gratitude journal, which I try to update each night before bed. I got the idea from O Magazine and it’s one of the many from that source that has served me well. It reminds me of all that was good about the day, lets the worries seep away and be replaced by the small pleasures, the little triumphs and the moments of happiness. It’s such a positive note to end the day on and usually it leaves me feeling much calmer. The journal has helped me so much to keep the niggling worries at bay and get to sleep.

And I’ve discovered the power of hot milk. I always thought it was an old wives tale, but it turns out that hot milk before bedtime really does have the power to help you sleep. I use skim, to keep the calorie count reasonable, but it helps me feel full and warm and it really does have an enzyme that helps you sleep.

Add to that my better eating habits, which mean my body isn’t full of refined sugars all the time, as well as regular exercise and I have had a decent recipe for combating insomnia for the last little while. Until now.

I blame my holiday break, where I was bad about keeping on schedule on top of all the rest. My body will need a little time to get back on track. Until then, I will suffer from my sleep deprivation. Fingers crossed that it won’t last long this time!

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