We all have those nights when our brains just won’t switch off and falling asleep seems harder than finding a Jeremy Kyle show guest with more than 9 teeth. I’ve compiled a list of what I do when I can’t stand to stare into the darkness anymore.
- Do puzzles. Using your brain to focus makes you feel tired quickly and your eyes heavy. My favourite is to play Mah-jong. What a challenge that can be!
- Focus on your breathing. Breathe in and count 7 seconds, breathe out and count 7. The long breaths will slow your heart rate and help you nod off.
- Read a book. Even if it’s a good book your eyes will still start feeling heavy and you will struggle to take in the words on the pages and, eventually, fall to sleep.
- Listen to an audiobook. This is a good option if you can’t put a light on in case you wake the, not-at-all-irritating person next to you.
- Invest in some lavender essential oil, pillow spray or scented wheat bag so you can have the soothing smell around you when you need it.
- Write in a diary. If it’s worries keeping you up, write them down. Once the thoughts are out of your mind, you may feel clearer and less stressed.
- Get yourself a hot drink to sup and soothe. A hot chocolate before bed tastes good and will help you feel relaxed. Stay away from caffeine for at least 3-4 hours before bed.
- Keep cool. Open a window and get some fresh air in.
- Keep your feet cool. When our feet get too hot, it can be very uncomfortable. Wrap a cold, damp towel around them before bed or simply hang them out of the covers.
- Listen to soothing music. There are apps you can download that play soothing sounds to help you fall asleep. Most of them have timers so you can play it for 30 minutes and it will automatically stop playing so you don’t drain the battery on your phone. Sometimes the sound of a rainforest or whale-song really helps you to escape your own mind and drift off to sleep.
- Lastly, listening to my other half talk about sprinkler systems and other engineering jargon can send me to the land of nod within minutes. I should record him boring me with tales of work and sell them on. I’d soon make a pretty penny!
I hope you found this post useful. I’d love to hear your suggestions for keeping yourself occupied during those long, sleepless nights.