Alaska Sleep Education Center

How to Stop Worrying and Sleep Better

Posted by Monica Gibson on Jan 10, 2021 3:15:00 AM

Worried couple doing their accounts in the living room at home

From family issues, relationships, work, school, and house bills, we all have something to worry about in the course of our lives. Unfortunately, these worries tend to bombard most of us when we slip into bed. You are probably familiar with this; you prepare for a good night’s sleep, when you hit the bed, anxious thoughts of what is happening around you attack you from every corner. Controlling them becomes impossible, and soon you are tossing and turning in bed with sleep nowhere to be found. Before you know it, it becomes a cycle of worry-tormented nights leading to sleep deprivation and insomnia.

It can be very hard to stay productive when you are sleep-deprived. Soon it starts spilling over to other aspects of your life, which increases your worrying. The more you worry, the more you don’t sleep, and the cycle continues.

However, it is possible to break this cycle and reclaim your life. Here are a few ways that you can stop worrying about that good night’s sleep.

  1. Work on eliminating stress

Stress is the number one culprit of bringing worry and sleep problems. If you are feeling stressed, chances are that you will have a hard time falling asleep. To start enjoying better sleep, you might need to first work on your stress.

Exercising is a good way to relieve stress that keeps you awake at night. This is because it releases endorphins that make you feel good and forget about your worries. Take a run, walk, or swim to release stress. Biking through nature is especially therapeutic and an effective way to calm the mind. You can take a few minutes every day to connect with nature on a bike.

Make it better with an electric bike as it can allow you to ride for longer without exerting too much pressure on your knees and thighs. This means that you can even ride when nursing an injury or at any age. Turning your ordinary bike into an electric bike can also be a fun little project by integrating an electric bike kit into a normal bike, and you are ready to enjoy an effortless ride and alleviate your feelings of stress.

  1. Schedule your worries

Just as you have a schedule for your daily tasks, it can help to include worry time in that schedule. However, you need to allocate it way before your bedtime so you are over with it by the time you get to bed. The idea is to analyze your worries with the intention of identifying the depth of the worry. Start by writing down every worry that crosses your mind during the day. During the worry time segment, look at each worry in depth. If there is something you can do about it, write the solution next to it. If there is nothing you can do about it, understand that some things are beyond your control and let them go.

 

  1. Shift your thoughts

Have you ever stopped to think about why worrying tends to set in after you have put off the lights? Well, it is simple. You have a lot to do during the day that you have no time to worry about. This means that when worry hits you, you are quick to dismiss the thought and get back to what you are doing.

You can do the same when worrying starts bothering you once you get to bed. Refocus your thoughts to distract your mind from worry. For instance, you can start thinking about an exciting scenario that can happen in your life for instance winning the lottery. Think of what you can do with the money, the shopping sprees and the like. The idea is to shift the attention from your worries and keep your brain focused on something else.

  1. Avoid stressful events before bedtime

When a stressful situation happens just before you go to bed, chances are that you will spend a lot of time thinking about it, making it impossible to fall asleep. Of course, you can’t avoid some situations such as getting a distress call about a sick relative or friend. However, you should try not to trigger any stress from your side. For instance, opening bills at night will only remind you of your financial constraints if any. Engaging in an argument late at night can only have you worry halfway through the night.

  1. Get out of bed

Worrying tends to go on the longer you lie in bed trying to fall asleep unsuccessfully. Rather than continue lying in bed fuelling those thoughts, get out of bed, and leave the room. You can go read a book or watch a movie. You can then go back to bed when you start feeling sleepy.

  1. Maintaining constant room temperature

There are many factors that contribute to stress, room temperature being one of them. If the room is very hot and humid you will feel uneasy and have trouble falling asleep. However, there is an easy solution to it. You can make use of a temperature controller to firstly measure the temperature of the room and then compare it to the desired value. When the room has a good temperature, it will positively impact your emotional state, you will feel more at peace and finally be able to fall asleep.

Conclusion

Besides working on eliminating worry, it is also good to work on your sleep cycle. Ensure that you sleep and wake up at the same time every day of the week. That way, it becomes easier to fall asleep when that time comes even when you are bombarded with worry.

IF you cannot seem to get to the bottom of what triggers your worry, anxiety and sleepless nights, call Alaska Sleep Clinic today.  We are the only sleep lab in the state with a Cognitive Behavior Therapist specializing in sleep medicine.  We are ready to help you Improve Your Sleep and Improve Your Life.

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Topics: managing stress, worry

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