Help, anxiety stopping me from sleeping

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This topic contains 11 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by Scott 3 months, 2 weeks ago.

Viewing 12 posts - 1 through 12 (of 12 total)
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  • #49920

    Id
    ✘ Not a client

    Started off not sleeping as was worried about event, because I wasn’t sleeping caused anxiety which in turn has made sleeping worse.

    #49958

    Scott
    Mentor

    It’s not uncommon for someone to have some disrupted sleep when a stressful life event occurs but sleep usually restores to normal once the event passes. When we begin to change our thoughts and behaviors about our sleep, our anxiety tends to worsen and it perpetuates our sleep issue. It doesn’t matter if anxiety or insomnia came first, you create a vicious cycle that both feed off each other. Worrying about sleep usually makes sleep more difficult and this can then lead to more worry. What is going through your mind when you begin thinking about sleep and is it usually heightened around bedtime?

    Scott J

    The content of this post is provided for informational and educational purposes only. It is not medical advice and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, disorder, or medical condition. It should never replace any advice given to you by your physician or any other licensed healthcare provider. Insomnia Coach LLC offers coaching services only and does not provide therapy, counseling, medical advice, or medical treatment. All content is provided “as is” and without warranties, either express or implied.
    #49962

    Id
    ✘ Not a client

    Thanks Scott, you are right and that is excately what is happening, I know as it gets close to bed time I start getting anxious , but don’t seem to be able to control it, it’s more a subconscious thought rather than conscious thought process. Any tips on controlling this would be appreciated.

    #49967

    Scott
    Mentor

    If feelings and thoughts were easy to control, we’d all be happy, all the time. We have much less control over our anxious thoughts than we would like, however, we do have a lot of control over our actions toward them. Trying to get rid of or avoid unpleasant thoughts about our sleep creates more anxiety and perpetuates our sleep issue. Instead of trying to control your thoughts, it’s much wiser if you change your relationship with them. Thoughts are usually unhelpful stories and only become a problem when you begin to believe in them. If you determine a thought to be unhelpful/negative, accept it when it arrives by saying, “oh, there’s that thought about my sleep again” and continue engaging in the activity you were doing when it arrived. Acknowledge it and move on. Remember, thoughts are simply – thoughts and you can’t believe everything you think.

    Hope that helps,

    Scott J

    The content of this post is provided for informational and educational purposes only. It is not medical advice and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, disorder, or medical condition. It should never replace any advice given to you by your physician or any other licensed healthcare provider. Insomnia Coach LLC offers coaching services only and does not provide therapy, counseling, medical advice, or medical treatment. All content is provided “as is” and without warranties, either express or implied.
    #49992

    Id
    ✘ Not a client

    Thanks Scott, already have great improvement in anxiety, but it’s early days yet and I’ve been there before, find if I think about it , it rears its head. Sleep has been better as well.

    #49995

    Scott
    Mentor

    Excellent! Progress is still progress!

    Scott J

    The content of this post is provided for informational and educational purposes only. It is not medical advice and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, disorder, or medical condition. It should never replace any advice given to you by your physician or any other licensed healthcare provider. Insomnia Coach LLC offers coaching services only and does not provide therapy, counseling, medical advice, or medical treatment. All content is provided “as is” and without warranties, either express or implied.
    #50088

    Id
    ✘ Not a client

    Hi me again after using sleep restriction for few days found I was sleeping much better, then wham one night go to bed, time midnight nearly drop off to sleep then awake, got up twice over the course of 2 – 3 hours then stayed in bed as felt fairly relaxed, not sure how much sleep I got but not a lot. My questio is how many times should you get out of bed if it starts to take all night.

    #50090

    Scott
    Mentor

    I’m glad to see that sleep restriction has been beneficial as it can seem counterintuitive to some people. Keep in mind that we’re all humans and will have an occasional rough night of sleep so don’t beat yourself up. You’re taking a huge step forward toward helping yourself by implementing these CBT-I techniques and are seeing positive results. If you’re relaxed and not experiencing anxious thoughts or frustrations while you lie in bed, you can remain in bed and relax. It’s when you begin to have ruminating thoughts about your sleep that you’ll want to consider removing yourself from bed and engage in something more enjoyable. You don’t want to create that association between your bed and wakefulness/anxiousness which is the purpose of getting out of bed. I’d also recommend that you not watch the clock figuring out if it’s been 15/30 minutes to get out of bed and 30 mins to return to bed. Instead, go by how you feel – if you feel anxious and don’t think you’ll go back to sleep within a few minutes, get out of bed. If you feel sleepy while listening to a podcast on the couch, return to bed.

    How have you been doing with changing how you manage your thoughts as we discussed above? Have you experienced any traction with that?

    Hope that helps,
    Scott J

    The content of this post is provided for informational and educational purposes only. It is not medical advice and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, disorder, or medical condition. It should never replace any advice given to you by your physician or any other licensed healthcare provider. Insomnia Coach LLC offers coaching services only and does not provide therapy, counseling, medical advice, or medical treatment. All content is provided “as is” and without warranties, either express or implied.
    #50094

    Id
    ✘ Not a client

    I thought that I was managing to cope with the thought by thinking about them and then letting go , but with no sleep feel that familiar knot in my stomach and though I try to put it aside not working too well.

    #50109

    Scott
    Mentor

    Earlier, you mentioned that you were seeing some positive results in your anxiety, hopefully from changing your relationship with them and not trying to avoid or get rid of your thoughts. The practice of that relationship takes time though. If it was that easy, we’d all be happy, all the time – none of us would have anxiety but we know that not to be the case in society. Remember, most of our thoughts on a daily basis are usually unhelpful and thoughts can’t hurt us, but our actions toward them can. How have you changed your relationship with your thoughts that saw an improvement in your anxiety?

    Scott J

    The content of this post is provided for informational and educational purposes only. It is not medical advice and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, disorder, or medical condition. It should never replace any advice given to you by your physician or any other licensed healthcare provider. Insomnia Coach LLC offers coaching services only and does not provide therapy, counseling, medical advice, or medical treatment. All content is provided “as is” and without warranties, either express or implied.
    #50141

    Id
    ✘ Not a client

    Trouble is I’m not really sure what I did, I did acknowledge the thought and told them to get lost ,which works I guess, but they keep popping up so obviously there in the back ground. Now I am trying the sleep restriction which means I am up after every body has gone to bed , I’m usually too tired to read or do coloring and so find myself quite up tight by time my sleep window starts, so I either end up staying up later or go to bed , drop off to sleep but seem to wake with in 30 min then it’s awake time. I realize as I’ve written this that I am obviously putting too much effort into trying to get to sleep!! Wish I could switch off and let it happen.

    #50165

    Scott
    Mentor

    That’s the thing with thoughts – they keep “popping” up, all day, every day, and most of them are unhelpful! We can’t control our thoughts and the only time thoughts are damaging to us is when we start to believe them. When they arrive, acknowledge them (e.g., “hello there!”) and allow them to pass. As I mentioned before, this process, if consistently implemented, takes time to begin seeing positive results but it sounds like you’re heading in the right direction. I think you’ve pinpointed another critical reason why some experience sleep disruption – you’re “putting too much effort into trying to get to sleep!”. If you ask people who don’t have insomnia what they do for sleep, they’d look at us like we’re crazy because they don’t make any effort – it just happens for them.

    Scott J

    The content of this post is provided for informational and educational purposes only. It is not medical advice and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease, disorder, or medical condition. It should never replace any advice given to you by your physician or any other licensed healthcare provider. Insomnia Coach LLC offers coaching services only and does not provide therapy, counseling, medical advice, or medical treatment. All content is provided “as is” and without warranties, either express or implied.
Viewing 12 posts - 1 through 12 (of 12 total)

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