One of the most common things that keep people from sleeping well, or sleeping at all, is the fear of not sleeping – sleep anxiety.
Sometimes this is mostly general anxiety that spills over onto sleep, sometimes the source of the anxiety is strictly that worry of whether or not you will sleep, how much you will sleep and what will happen if you don’t.
If you have mostly sleep anxiety, well then the good new is that it’s not too difficult to get past. Just by spending less time in bed and focusing attention on things not sleep related sleep anxiety decreases as you see that you can sleep and your sleep confidence grows.
If you have more general anxiety, or want to speed up the process of reducing sleep anxiety, then you should try focused journaling.
As you know, with anxiety comes the constant bombardment of thoughts produced by your brain. Without an outlet, it is up to you to react and respond to all the whims of an overactive mind. If all this activity on the other hand can be directed towards a designated time frame, the bombardment will cease.
Here’s what to do:
In the early afternoon, set off 5-10 minutes and grab a pen and paper. During these minutes, try to get every single worry you can retrieve from your mind written down. The more material you find, the more stressors and worries you identify, the better.
Don’t expect anything to change in the first few days. But if you keep going, just like with any exercise, you will start seeing results. When your brain has an outlet, it will bother you less and give you more peace of mind to spend on things you enjoy.
And when you have more peace of mind, good sleep is soon to follow!