I have been meaning to write for a while about sleep and insomnia. So when I saw that the Guardian Newspaper recently ran a story about the former ‘Sex and the City’ star Kim Cattrall and her battle with insomnia, it spurned me into taking action. According to the Surrey Sleep Research Centre “Sleep disorders are prevalent, with approximately 10 to 20 per cent of the European and US population reporting frequent sleep disruption.” That’s a lot of people awake at night. So what’s happening?
Insomnia and feeling Safe
We sleep best when we feel safe and content. Worrying e.g. about our difficulties at work, our relationships, things we have to get done tomorrow – won’t help us fall asleep. Worrying actually accelerates our brain sending our mind into overdrive, our body tenses up, we hold our breath and stress hormones are excreted. Instead of sleeping we prepare to ‘fight or flight’ and we therefore suffer from what is known as insomnia.
Frustration fuels Insomnia
The fight continues when we lie in bed for hours getting stressed and more annoyed with ourselves. We add salt to our wounds by watching the clock – calculating (still more brain stimulation) – how many hours we have left until we have to get up. When we wake the next day, we feel exhausted, irritated and annoyed. Instead of bouncing out of bed refreshed, we feel frustrated and tired. Then we use coffee, chocolate or sugary drinks to keep ourselves awake. We begin negatively programming our mind with statements like: “I won’t be able to sleep tonight”, “I’ll be awake all night just like last night” etc. etc. As night falls we start to worry more and again our levels of stress increase. This quickly becomes a pattern.
Insomnia and Stress
Our sleep is directly affected by stress. It is impossible to solve stress with stress. Feeling insecure creates stress, feeling secure naturally counteracts stress. What is also important is to be relaxed during the day, to change our beliefs and habits about sleep.
Switch Off & Relax
Try this simple exercise. It’s a great way to turn off the activity in your nervous system and relax for a brief moment:
Switching Off For a Moment – Turn your phone off for 5 minutes. Sit with your back upright and put both your feet on the floor. Take a deep breath (a deep one right down into your belly). Let your shoulders drop. Breathe deeply again. Focus on your jaw, part your jaw, relax your tongue and mouth. Continue to breathe deeply from your belly/abdomen for about 3 to 5 breaths and close your eyes. Just be still for a few more moments. Then open your eyes, have a sip of water…and notice how you feel. [Remember to turn your phone back on too].
Hypnotherapy and Insomnia
I have to admit I love my job. My passion is helping clients relax and let go of stress. During a consultation for insomnia we spend time discussing a variety of potent strategies to help clients prepare for sleep. Then together we create positive suggestions that are integrated into a tailor-made hypnotherapy MP3 recording to re-programme the mind away from insomnia towards sleeping deeply through the night. Changing a habit takes more than one day, so continued listening of this recording is essential. As with all new skills, be persistent – some people notice immediate relief, others after a week or more.
It is possible to change your mind, your sleep behaviour and patterns. If you struggle with insomnia are unable to get to sleep, or wake up regularly during the night, or are disturbed by someone snoring while you sleep, help is at hand. Contact me to take your first step towards being able to sleep like a baby again!
My thanks to Jody (not her real name) for her kind feedback:
“I have had a huge shift in that I AM OFF MY SLEEP MEDS AFTER 1 and half yrs. I can’t describe the feeling of utter joy and empowerment I have since the last 2 days. It means so much to be finally in control of my life. That was the last piece of the puzzle I needed to fit in the ‘my empowerment series’. I can’t thank you enough.”
To free yourself from insomnia contact me Michelle A. Hardwick for a consultation either in person in the UK: Phone – 07857369619 or in Ireland: Phone – 0871492338.
Alternatively contact me, Michelle here to book your private consultation via Skype/Zoom.