Sleep Restriction or ACT for Insomnia

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This topic contains 248 replies, has 11 voices, and was last updated by Mac0908 3 months, 1 week ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 31 through 45 (of 249 total)
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    Martin Reed
    ★ Admin

    I just came across a great discussion between Daniel Erichsen, a sleep physician based just down the road from me, and someone with insomnia who went back and forth between CBT-I and ACT. I think it adds some really good context and additional value to this forum topic!


    ✘ Not a client

    Interesting talk.

    Some key differences to me: Again, not sure he ever experienced nil sleep nights, or if he did it was rare for him.

    I never felt anxious feelings in my life ever, before I had insomnia, which started 30 months ago, when I was 54. He said he did recall getting anxiety before he developed insomnia, therefore could not attribute all his next day anxious feelings to a “bad night”


    ✓ Client

    Thanks, Martin. Interesting but a little hard to follow. He seems to be getting better using CBT. I wonder why some people get stuck and seem to remain on a plateau without much improvement. Any ideas, Martin?

    As for ACT, last night was my second night. Went to bed very, very tired. Was in and out of sleep again all night. Not consciously aware of any particular thoughts or struggle, so didn’t really need to practice any mindfulness. Just slipped in and out of sleep. As a result, am tired again this morning. Will use mindfulness during the day to keep positive. Hopefully over time, my sleep will begin to settle down. Need to be patient. Am reminded of Carlos from the book, whose sleep did not improve for at least two weeks, but by two months was sleeping normally. At least I’m feeling less apprehension about going to bed at night because I won’t be struggling. May not sleep well, but won’t be consciously aware of it.


    ✘ Not a client

    Wow, so many videos, but each with barely 100 views. No wonder insomniacs feel lonely, we are! Still, very noble of Daniel to keep it up, I hope his channel picks up.


    Celtic Barb
    ✘ Not a client

    Deb. No matter what I do I will not be comfy. I have body damage from this.  I have to heal and yes I did not have patience and why for my questioning what I know likely will work for me.  I just got an email from a big website and she told me what she did and It is much like I am.

    I guess I have to learn patience and yes I know it is not easy.  I have to do it to recover.  I am committed to recovery.


    ✓ Client

    Third night of ACT. Went to bed with little to no apprehension. Was ready to accept whatever happened and go along for the ride. Was awake for awhile and then slept lightly all night, in and out of dreaming all night long. Had lots of dreams. Usually I don’t remember dreams but was aware of them this time. Last one was about being somewhere where there was skiing and all kinds of winter sports. Nice. Wish I knew how to ski. My husband’s going to Reno in a week to meet with family and ski. I’ll stay home with the cats.

    Am tired again this morning. Oh well. I’ll take tiredness any day over the endless anxiety, worry, fear and frustration that I’ve been living with for months. I accept the fact that it’s just going to take some time for my sleep to settle down. Insomnia has traumatized the system and it’s been hyper-sensitized for 5 months. So it takes some time to calm down and realize that sleeping and the bed is a safe place to be.


    ✘ Not a client

    Ill take tiredness over endless anxiety, worry, fear and frustration as well. At least I can cope with that better. I dreamt that I was at Costco lol. I am feeling dizzy and irritable today. I got a block of 4 hours of sleep but after 4am I couldn’t really sleep longer. Sleep maintenance is an issue for me. I wake up and kind of don’t feel sleepy but know my body needs more than the 4 hours. I did find Guy Meadows audiobook online on youtube for free and listen on and off when I have the chance at work.

    I hear others such as Christina Applegate who struggled with insomnia for many years and is better. She still does have the odd bad night (like we all do) but it’s at bay. For her as rough as it was, it seems like basic sleep hygiene, some emphasis on wake/to bed time etc fixed it. I wish the basics like lavender oil, tea, whatever herb would have worked. The truth is that we don’t always sleep in the same bed and may not always have that pill or prop available. It can be scary but more often than not, when removed it didn’t make a huge difference.

    Hope your husband has a great time skiing!


    ✓ Client

    Thanks! He will! He goes skiing every year. For years he’s been lucky because as an astrophysicist he goes to conferences regularly. They always arrange to have the conferences at cool places like the Alps, Sweden, Aspen, Reno, etc., so he would get in his ski trip there. Otherwise, he goes to visit his cousin in California, who lives an hour from the ski slopes. I’ve tried it a few times and gave up. I’m not interested in trying anymore. But I know he loves it!


    ✘ Not a client

    Ha, I’m naturally super sporty and love adrenaline and going fast, rollercoasters and that sort of thing.

    My wife is a great skier, but started when much younger than me. But I’ve tried it on at least four weeks and don’t get on with it at all. Too painful in my feet. Love being in the mountains though and fresh air.

    Maybe there is a link between being rubbish at skiing and poor sleep. Ha!   🙂


    ✓ Client

    My husband learned when he was young too. He grew up in California and would go to the Sierra Nevadas to ski with his dad. I tried learning too late and couldn’t get the hang of it. Now I’m older and prefer not to break any bones!

    4th day of ACT – slept like a normal person. Yay! But woke up with a sore throat so am coming down with something. Miraculously, I didn’t get sick the whole 5 months of insomnia. Now when I’m finally getting over it, sickness strikes!

    Mac – haven’t heard from you in awhile. How are you?

    Dragon – how’s it going? Did you do SR for a week? If so, how’d it go for you?


    ✘ Not a client

    Hi Deb,

    See my comment re Guy M at Sleep As A Learned Phobia post


    ✘ Not a client


    I learned to ski when I was about 12 years old. The earlier you start, the easier it is to learn. I always say that when you are young you are more willing to fall down over and over again and it doesn’t hurt. Your center of gravity is lower so that also helps. Sking is one of the only winter activities I enjoy so I try to at least go a few times a season. I usually go to Utah but I passed this year in fear that it would be a bad trip due to my sleep issues. I went to Vermont instead. It wasn’t bad. There were struggles but wasn’t bad. Looking back I had a good time!

    I slept better last night. I managed to get about 6 hours. After 4 I got up for some water and went back to bed and fell asleep after I guess 15 minutes or so. “Sometimes” I can tell if I will fall back asleep quickly. I genuinely feel sleepy hitting back on the pillow feels amazing. The nights where I struggle, I feel tired but not sleepy. Almost if someone injected 2 cups of coffee. A decent night for me these days is getting 6+ hours and if I do wake up, being able to get back to sleep without frustration, SC (getting out of bed intentionally) and in reasonable time. I woke up genuinely more tired but I believe when I am tired and not wired I am more able to fall back asleep if I do wake up in the middle of the night. I think lower stress through the day and just feeling better helps.



    ✓ Client

    Glad you slept better last night, Delv.

    I was very athletic when young so that would have been the ideal time to learn. But growing up with a single mother raising 5 kids on a clerk’s salary in the inner city of Chicago, there was no money for anything extra. Now when I could afford it, I’m too nervous about falling. I’m very willing to take leaps of faith and risks, but not in the physical realm!


    ✓ Client

    5th day of ACT. Took some time to fall asleep, probably because I had a second coffee a bit too late – at 4:00. For the most part no negative thoughts or feelings during that period of sleeplessness. Remember one fearful feeling creep in for a moment but then let it go. Slept soundly the rest of the night. Don’t remember any dreams. Best of all, the nightmare is over.


    ✘ Not a client

    Depending on your time to bed, 4PM coffee should have minimal impact. As GM says and I am paraphrasing “Good sleepers have coffee, have a glass of wine, watch TV and don’t think or worry about it and don’t have trouble generally”. If the cup of coffee was at 8PM then that would be a bigger factor. Caffeine does stay in your system long but by 10-11PM it should be a non issue. Personally I would think the same way. I may have a coke during dinner. Coffee I only have in the morning and maybe on rare occasions in the early afternoon (1-3PM) but inside I think about it when in reality it probably isn’t nearly as big of a factor as me thinking it is!

    Glad to hear you slept well. I fell asleep quickly and slept from about 12:15 to 5:30. Sometimes when I am up, I am up. If I stay in bed I am just there relaxing but too awake to fall back asleep which sometimes I feel more than fine with. It’s like I am wired for 4-6 hours of sleep all of a sudden. On occasion Ill pull 6.5-7.5 once every few weeks. What I am trying to do is better stick with my wake up time more firmly (especially on weekends when I may stay in bed a bit longer) and try to stabilize my sleep. I know I am trying to control sleep when I should let go. If I wake up at 4am, I should just be like “okay… cool ” rather than me thinking “ok I have 3 hours, how can I maximize my time to ensure I feel the best today. Should I relax with my eyes closed? should I get out of bed? Should I get a glass of water and try to go back to bed? Should I try the couch?”.

    I do avoid looking at the time but after awhile I give in if it’s been what I feel like a long time. I should put the time away even more so I have less focus on what point of the night I am at. If I don’t hear birds and the sun creeping through I am in for disappointment anyway.

Viewing 15 posts - 31 through 45 (of 249 total)

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