Dealing with thoughts… anxiety… insomnia

hmmm an ambitious title.

Anxiety is often like insomnia, and of course can cause it. When we can not sleep, it is often because of thoughts… those silly ones.. what if I didn’t water my plants today, did I lock the door, did I study the right topics, what if it rains, snows, what if it doesn’t… and on and on.. or more serious ones, I can’t pay my bills this month… I am going in for surgery tomorrow…

The mind will keep us awake for hours, sorting things out, we are trying to sleep so have released control of it. It is doing what it wants, like an unsupervised child, jumping from thing to thing in a toy store.

Anxiety is like this. We have released control and are allowing our mind to wander, to form thoughts that torment us. Most often those thoughts are not logical, not likely to happen, but we can’t turn them off.

Or can we?

***********

with practice, we can.

The first tries may not go so well, it is something though, that practice will allow us success with.

So how do we do that?

For both insomnia and anxiety the same thing will work. We take control of our thoughts back.

The key is to involve our brain in this, get it interested, make it focus on this so it dismisses its housekeeping, it can do that when we are asleep.

It is a meditation of a sort, combined with breathing.

We  start with a deep cleansing breath, very deep, filling our lungs right to the tip of our… well lungs, lol, not toes… they don’t go down that far, but take a breath as if they do.

Hold it.

Relax, let it out very slowly.

Let your body go limp, if you have muscles that are tense, tense them more for a moment and then let them relax, chances are you do. When we are anxious, our muscles are tense.

Keep the deep breathing going, deep breaths, hold for a bit and then let it out very slowly.

As you do this, think of your legs, your feet, one at a time, tense the muscles there, starting with your leg, hold it for a moment, and release as you exhale… then the other leg..  your tummy muscles.. arms, hands… back, neck.

Take a deep breath, tense the muscle and then release it as you exhale. Only think of this.

When you have finished, all the muscles are relaxed.. tis time to paint.

yup. Paint.

You can paint what ever scene you wish. lets try a meadow.

meadow (Small)

Picture it clearly in your mind… take a deep breath and hold it, release slowly. smile at the meadow, you did a good job.

now, lets add some trees…

images (4)

Close or off in the distance… another deep breath and smell the grass.

I like water, so tis time to add a little lake, perhaps a stream too

meadow-lake-fishing-camp

Can you hear the water flowing? bubbling against the shore as it flows into the lake?

The air smells so clear and clean… take another breath

Perhaps add a little  bunny rabbit munching on the grass.

Keep adding things, a sail boat, birds..  a child flying a kite

If you are trying to sleep.. soon you will doze off.

Anxiety will be pushed aside.

It may not be easy the first time, don’t give up. 

Try another scene, a beach.. the ocean

a thick forest

a butterfly exploring a tree

lying under a willow tree looking at glimpses of the sky through the thick canopy

Control your mind, choose your thoughts.

************

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About sensuousamberville

I am a Practitioner, teacher and student. I think we should always be students, we should keep our minds open, to continue to learn. :-)

13 responses »

  1. Elke Meixner

    Great advice. When I was in hospital and couldnt sleep – this is another suggestion. The nurse said to look around the room and remember five objects. Then close your eyes and in the same order you saw them, now imagine seeing them with closed eyes.

    ALSO – and I would NEVER have believed it: I was asked to choose aetheric oils that had a calming effect. I chose Jasmin and Bergamott. They then drenged a kitchen wipe with jojoba oil, and 2 drop of both oils. This, the tucked in a washcloth and I was told to put it under my pillow allowing all put a small piece of the cloth. Amazing. I was asleep within 5 minutes.

    I dont want to steal your suggestion. Just be helpful and add a few.

    hugs, Elke

    Reply
  2. Elke Meixner

    Please forgive spelling errors. Meanwhile the German language has become my strength over English xx

    Reply
  3. You mentioned this to me the other day…I tried it and it didn’t work.

    After we spoke I had realized I was sort of doing it wrong. As I visualized I was actually making more work for myself and not dozing off. I was thinking of a house. And it was my home in Ireland. My room actually. And I was trying to recall the most intricate of details. And I think that started to engage my brain too much and kept me awake as I think I was beginning to fight sleeping so I could get it correct! Jaysus…only I can make a seemingly peaceful exercise turn into a job lol.

    But you are right….practice nod nods. I have not really needed to try that of late….but I will again when I have trouble sleeping. I think the beginning part of what you said…the deep breathing….and concentrating on releasing your muscles from tension…that will help I think *S*.

    Ok…this one HAS to go on one of your other pages…nod nods …tis a good tip!

    Reply
  4. Very good advice Amber – as usual you will help many. Katie made me smile about turning it into a job. I also like the oils tip so thank you Elke. *Smile*

    Reply
  5. I love the idea of painting a lovely picture in my mind. I also learnt to set aside “worry time” during the day and to write down all of my worries in a book. This means when I have worries when I am trying to sleep I can write them down or tell myself- STOP! I will worry about this is my worry time.

    Reply
  6. I was having the worst problem with sleeping last night. Anxiety kept me awake with thoughts of self harm so bad it physically hurt. (I didn’t and have been clean for 67 days, don’t worry) But I’m so glad I saw this. Hopefully this will help me a little.
    I haven’t talked to you for a while. I’ve been so busy and I apologize. Just know that nothing bad happened 🙂

    Reply

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