Stress is one of the most common triggers for sleeplessness. We find ourselves lying in bed, hour after hour ruminating about the problem then looking at the clock and when we see how little sleep we are going to get we feel even more stressed about the next day. This becomes a vicious cycle which results in us relating our bed to feeling stressed and no longer being able to get a good nights sleep, even when there is nothing to worry about!
1. If there is something on your mind, don’t ignore it. Instead get into the habit of writing down what is on your mind and try problem solving rather than worrying. This way when we go to bed we are less likely to ruminate if we feel we have a plan.
2. If the cause of the stress is not something we can resolve then learning the art of mindfulness can be a really helpful tool for those who sleep poorly due to stress. Mindfulness is a technique where we learn how to simply become aware of our thoughts rather than engaging in them. This approach helps to calm body and mind and make it more likely that you will be able to drop off.
3. Finally, don’t be tempted to go to bed early in the hopes that you will get more sleep as unfortunately sleep doesn’t work in that way. In order to sleep well we need to build a strong drive to fall asleep which is done simply by time spent out of bed. Get into a good routine where you get up early and go to bed later and keep this routine consistent so you build up a healthy drive to sleep meaning you are less likely to lie in bed worrying.