How To Overcome Insomnia For Good


We all know those nights when we are unable to sleep and find ourselves lying awake until the wee hours of the morning. Having this happen to us every now and then isn’t much of a problem, but having to deal with this regularly definitely does. Is insomnia curable, you ask? Fortunately, it is and it’s easier than many of us think to get our body and mind to calm down and sleep blissfully again the way we once did when we were children. Shift your mind to welcome sleep instead of fearing it, and take specific action to support your body in calming down.

This post is a part of the The Beauty Of… series which focuses on finding the positives in life and improving unwelcome aspects of situations so that we will actually enjoy them.

STORY TIME

: Why Insomnia Occurs :

I still vividly remember the first time I ever woke up in the middle of the night, sitting upright in bed with a full-blown panic attack washing over me.

My heart was pounding so hard I could feel it beating down to my groin area. My pajamas were soaked to the point it felt as if I had just taken a shower while fully dressed. And I couldn’t breathe even after flinging open the window.

To me, it came out of nowhere. I hadn’t expected it. I wasn’t prepared for it. And I sure as hell didn’t know how to handle it.

After repeatedly dealing with this over three months and hoping it would miraculously take care of itself and disappear as suddenly as it had materialized, I realized that it wouldn’t.

I was struck with insomnia, and it wasn’t getting any better – quite the opposite was the case.

When my family physician shrugged his shoulders and prescribed sleeping pills, I was initially relieved – only to be told by the pharmacist I handed my prescription to that this was an immediately addictive drug and that he therefore refused to sell it to me.

On the one hand, I was crushed because I was so worn out by the lack of sleep over months that I would have done almost anything just to get a little rest again.

On the other hand, I was deeply thankful (and still am today) that this man, of all people, served me that day and saved me from becoming addicted to medication on top of everything that was already going on.

Coming home, I knew I needed to change a couple of things to be able to sleep again. And so I did. Little by little and actually with quite a lot of fun along the way.

lAll of this happened a few years ago, and I haven’t had a single s night since. I sleep well, wake up refreshed, and look forward to going to bed at night. And I would love to share with you all the methods that helped me to get there.

SHIFT YOUR MIND

: Benefits Of Insomia :

The first step to treating insomnia and returning to healthy and regular sleep is changing how we perceive and assess sleeplessness.

As long as we dread lying awake, this exact condition will be what our attention focuses on. And when our brain detects something worrying, isn’t it natural that it prevents us from sleeping?

If we want to rest peacefully, we need to first calm our mind and help it understand that sleeplessness is nothing to worry about. The body will follow suit.


:1. Enjoy The Quietness Around You:

When nighttime sets in, the world becomes quiet. Life as we know it comes to a halt, and the rustling and buzzing of even big cities diminishes.

For many of us, waking up to this unfamiliar quietness can be unsettling but that’s only because we’re not used to it. There are no constant distractions and no outside triggers to focus on. All of a sudden, we are thrown back on ourselves, and it makes us nervous.

The good thing is, it doesn’t need to be this way. Being awake in the middle of the night doesn’t have to be disconcerting. We can choose to assess the situation differently and rediscover the soothing nature of nightly silence surrounding us.

Speaking of nature, while everything around us quietens down, the sounds of nature that get drowned out by busy noises during the day can also move back into our focus.

There’s no reason to assume that everyone except us is asleep and we should therefore be worried because we aren’t. The world around us is also awake, we just might not be aware of it.

Next time insomnia strikes, let’s open the window or step outside onto our porch or balcony and enjoy the beauty of the world that comes alive at night. Isn’t it beautiful?


:2. Insomnia Can Go Away:

Some of us find it particularly disturbing that our insomnia seemingly strikes out of nowhere. It starts without a warning, and we feel as if we have no control over it.

That is not true, though. We are not helplessly at its mercy – we just wrongly assume we are. There is a cause for everything in life, and sleeplessness is no exception.

There’s a reason why it came into our lives, and there’s a cure that will make it go away again. I have been there myself and didn’t think it was possible, and yet it was.

All we need to do is muster up the will to try out something new (and maybe have a little bit of patience) and then dive into actually changing our ways.

The body isn’t designed for too little sleep on a long-term basis, and it will eventually get back to sleeping normally if you create a surrounding to help it relax.

Read on, and I promise you will find ways to invite a good night’s sleep back into your life.


:3. Ups And Downs Are Normal:

It is perfectly normal to not sleep peacefully all the time. Nobody ever sleeps the same, and it’s okay to go through a rough phase now and then.

Our body and mind work in unison, and if either one of them is incapacitated, it can affect the way we sleep (or rather the way we don’t). It is nothing to worry about – rest assured that it will eventually get better.

If we decide to investigate the way a child would (interested in figuring out the truth instead of being afraid of the situation), there’s a lot to learn for us, and we’ll even have a lot of fun doing it.

  • What are we eating or drinking before going to bed that might be different from how it was before?
  • Is something bothering us at work or in one of our relationships that’s keeping us up at night?
  • Has something changed regarding our sleeping arrangement that we haven’t considered yet?

Let’s whip out our magnifying glass, notepad, and pencil and set off on the search.


:4. You Can Make Use Of The Time:

Since we’re already dealing with insomnia, we might as well use it to our advantage and with a cheerful heart. Let’s look at it as having valuable extra time outside of our daily grind.

Up at 3.00 AM again? Great. We might not be allowed to vacuum our home at this time in an apartment building, but there are plenty of quiet things we can do and didn’t have time for during the day.

Awakened at 5.30 AM instead? Fine. The alarm would have gone off at 6.30 anyway, so how about starting and finishing work an hour early to get more out of the afternoon?

As soon as we find something positive in being awake at the “wrong” time, we can stop being afraid or angry about it and start to let go.


Insomnia is a glamorous term for thoughts you forgot to have in the day.

Alain de Botton

Help this ugly duckling turn into a swan.
This website is brand new and hasn’t gained much traction yet, so I rely heavily on word of mouth. If you enjoyed what you read so far, it would make my day if you shared it with friends and family and followed me on social media. Thank you! ❤︎

REACH YOUR GOAL

: Ways To Treat Insomnia Naturally :

Once we have managed to stop treating our insomnia with suspicion, we are ready for the next step: To do all the exciting things that will help our body calm down and embrace sleep again.

When I was struck with sleeplessness, I tried out so many (so-called) remedies that I ended up losing track. Most of them didn’t do a thing, and some of them helped a little before quickly losing their effect.

And then there was a handful of actions that ended up changing my sleep regimen for good, and I have happily stuck to them ever since – simply because they work like a charm.


:1. Write It All Down:

When we cannot sleep, our first instinct is often to ask ourselves why, which is a good start. What we usually don’t do, however, is listen to what our subconscious and body have to say.

It’s time to change that.

Let’s keep a sheet of paper or our favorite notebook within easy reach right next to the bed. If there’s no nightstand, one of these practical bedside organizers is a perfect alternative.

The next time we wake up in the middle of the night, let’s ask ourselves why once more and be surprised at how much will bubble to the surface. Asking that question right when the situation occurs is a lot more effective than trying to answer it in the middle of a busy day when nothing could be farther away than the nighttime.

The body and the mind can be quite talkative if we let them.

Our feet might tell us they’re freezing, our bladder might insist it needs to go to the bathroom, and our stomach might be peeved at the late or rich dinner (pro tip: check the so-called organ clock used in traditional Chinese medicine if you tend to always wake up around the same time).

Equally, our mind might be mulling over something a coworker said, worrying about money issues, or being indecisive regarding a decision that needs to be made.

By writing everything down that’s going through our head upon awakening, we can slow down and quieten the thought carousel turning inside our head. We can rest assured that none of the thoughts will go missing or be forgotten, and we can return to face and solve them once the sun comes up in the morning.

During the nighttime, problems appear much bigger than they are – and wouldn’t you rather deal with them once they’re not Goliath anymore but have shrunken back to their original size of David? Yeah, me, too.


:2. Block Out Distractions:

Have you ever found yourself sleeping better at a hotel than you do at home? This could be an interesting side effect of being surrounded by fewer distractions.

When I was in kindergarten, I regularly drove my parents crazy by putting all my toys away every single evening – and that even included taking apart Lego creations I had built and putting them back into the closet.

My parents didn’t understand why I was doing it, and all I knew was that I couldn’t sleep as long as they were in sight of me. I actually didn’t remember this until my insomnia phase when I suddenly understood what it was all about.

Anything that takes our mind away from sleeping by shifting our focus to it can and likely does cause problems going to sleep or staying asleep.

There could simply be too many items standing or lying around in our field of vision.

The wrong temperature could cause us to melt into a puddle underneath the sheets or shatter our teeth freezing.

The bedroom could be too bright for our body’s liking (this is particularly likely for those of us who have ever experienced sleeping like a log in a hotel room with blackout curtains).

Or maybe sounds from outside (birds, neighbors, traffic) are catching our attention, in which case it could be helpful to try out a ticking clock or an indoor fountain to shift our focus back to ourselves.


:3. Have A Playlist Ready:

Of all five senses, the sense of hearing is the first to develop when new life is conceived and the last to go when we leave this world again. We are auricular animals in a way.

If we keep this in mind, it is only half as surprising that sounds we hear have a significant effect on us. Wouldn’t it be a waste not to use it?

Creating and listening to playlists with well-chosen songs that we enjoy can work wonders (provided that they don’t pump us up too much). I love instrumentals such as Hans Zimmer’s You’re So Cool, Yann Tiersen’s Comptine d’un eutre été, and Philip Glass’ Tales from the Loop theme – but everyone’s list will look entirely, and that’s part of the fun.

Alternatively, we might want to dig up our old records or tapes that we used to listen to when we were little – they tend to have an extraordinarily soothing effect on us even in our older years.

And speaking of childhood and soothing, how about asking our parents to record themselves reading aloud the bedtime stories we loved most as a child? Nothing is too unusual when it comes to overcoming insomnia, right?


:4. Get Up And About:

If none of the above has worked, we need to go a step further.

One of the worst things we can do upon waking in the middle of the night is to toss and turn for too long while trying to get back to sleep.

That doesn’t mean we should jump right out of bed as soon as we wake up. The first step should always be to give our body and mind the chance to go right back to sleep.

If we lie awake for more than twenty minutes at a time, however, our body is clearly showing us that it isn’t ready for sleep again just yet.

In this case, getting up and doing something entirely unrelated to sleeping is indeed the best option.

So, let’s put on a cozy pair of socks and our favorite sweater to cuddle up in and get ready to engage in something we enjoy.


:5. Do Something Soothing:

When we sit down to do something other than sleeping, it is important not to spend time with something that is too stimulating.

While reading seems to be an obvious choice, picking up that bestselling thriller to continue with the shooting scene where we left off might not be ideal.

All activities that are in some way repetitive have a soothing effect on our brain – and that’s exactly what we’re looking for.

Remember that lava lamp your big sister had in her room that you could watch for hours? Or the aquarium your uncle had with all those colorful fish that mesmerized you? That’s the kind of trance we’re looking for.

For some of us, it needs to be something a little less visual and more haptic. In that case, sitting down for a jigsaw puzzle or solo-playable board games with those clicky tiles (sigh) can be heaven.

And if we need even a little more action, how about enjoying the foamy bubbles while doing the dishes?

Anything that works offline and doesn’t involve a screen is welcome.

Let’s light up your coziest lamp and enjoy ourselves until the sleepiness finds its way back to us (and it will, I promise).


:6. Create a Ritual:

Whether we have children living with us or are involved in their lives from afar – we all know how important rituals are to them.

Children thrive best whenever they have a regular daily routine, and evening rituals are an important part of it. Everything that is familiar to us and brings stability into our fast-paced world calms us down, and what works for children works just as well for adults.

Those of us who have a particular morning routine know that having something unanticipated come crashing into our little world can throw us entirely out of balance for the remainder of the day.

Interestingly, it also works the other way around. Creating a routine for our evening that we can nestle into and feel safe within helps us shake off whatever unpleasant experiences we had during the day. Additionally, our brain learns to associate this ritual with going to bed, so it’s a win-win situation.

This can be reading a few pages of a book or drinking a cup of hot chocolate. It can be lighting a candle with your favorite scent. It would even work with going for a walk around the block to clear our heads and look forward to snuggling up in our comforter.

Anything goes as long as it’s not too stimulating (exercising or watching a true crime show an hour before going to bed might not be the best idea). Let’s give it a try.


:7. Cuddle Up Under A Weighted Blanket:

I discovered this rather accidentally one winter when my heating broke down on a Friday evening, and I had to wait until Monday for my landlord to solve the problem.

After searching the entire apartment for extra blankets I ended up sleeping underneath this impressive pile of blankets of all shapes and colors.

And what can I say? For the first time in years, and three nights in a row I slept like a baby without waking once.

It wasn’t the warmth that made me sleep so soundly, though (although that undoubtedly helped). It was the weight.

Studies have since confirmed that this is not a figment of the imagination but is indeed a thing. We sleep better when cocooned into something heavy.

So, to sleep peacefully and without worry, let’s get up for a blanket hunt the next time we cannot sleep or alternately shop for weighted blankets (yes, they’re out there). It’s well worth the effort.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT

: Questions To Ponder Over :

  1. What do you personally assume to be the culprit that triggered your insomnia?
  2. When was the last time you vividly remember sleeping exceptionally well?
  3. How did that differ from your current situation (time, location, setup, company)?
  4. What would make you feel reassured enough to go back to sleep after waking?
  5. How can you incorporate one or several of the above-mentioned methods?


I’d be thrilled to hear from you in the comments below.
Don’t be shy.

HAVE A LOOK

: Information For Research :

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CONCLUSION

: Key Takeaways From This Post :

Insomnia can be treated naturally and effectively and doesn’t have to be a permanent condition. With the right approach, it will disappear just as quickly as it surfaced.

It loses its grip on us as soon as we shift our focus away from how it worries us and start learning to listen to what it wants to tell us – because there is always an underlying reason.

By embracing the quietness of the night, we can positively use insomnia time, and one of the natural remedies is bound to make us sleep like a baby again:

  • Writing down thoughts to quieten the mind
  • Minimizing distractions in the sleeping environment
  • Creating and listening to soothing playlists
  • Engaging in relaxing activities
  • Establishing bedtime rituals to signal the body it’s time to sleep
  • and many more…

Know that you can leave your sleeplessness behind, and your sleep will be so much more peaceful once it returns to you because of all the things you’ve changed for the better to get it back.

They say, “If you love something, let it go.” and it couldn’t be truer for sleep. The more we try to summon it back into our lives, the further it will run away from us. But once we ease up on it and instead focus on calming our body and mind, sleep will return to us.

“If you love something, let it go. If it comes back to you, it’s yours forever.”

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2 Comments How To Overcome Insomnia For Good

  1. Avatar for AlexAlex May 6, 2024 at 1:47 PM

    Dear special someone who is reading my blog,
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    I’m so excited you took time out of your day to read this post and even made it all the way down to the comments section. I’d love to hear from you and exchange thoughts and ideas – so please get in touch!

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    Reply
  2. Avatar for Gino NorrissGino Norriss May 20, 2024 at 9:49 PM

    I think this is one of the most important info for me.
    And i am glad reading your article. But wanna remark on few general things, The web site
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    Reply

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