Insomnia is one thing. Chronic insomnia is quite another. I’m sure I’ve spent thousands of dollars trying to deal with it over the years, with special vitamins, supplements, diets, and workout equipment; not to mention doctors, therapists and life coaches.
Then I came across this article about curing your insomnia with “sleep restriction therapy”. At first I was skeptical. But, then I remembered basic training when the drill sergeant came stomping through the barracks at 4:30 every morning yelling and banging on a garbage can lid for us to wake up. A miserable experience, but some of the best sleep I can remember.
Anyway, this will be my fifth night, so I can’t recommend it just yet, but it’s starting to look promising.
The first night, I didn’t even go to bed just like it said not to do in the article. Then, at 6:30 Saturday morning, I turned on the sun lamp and continued on with my day.
Then the second night, my plan was to sleep for 3 hours (3:30 – 6:30). Only to my disappointment and surprise, I was only able to sleep for a little under 2½! That’s after being awake for 45 hours!
Still, I keep it up. The third night, I set the goal at 2½ hours and again was disappointed. I woke up after 1½. Ugh!
I wondered if there was anyone else on earth whose circadian rhythms were as screwed up as mine. The first night staying up all night, didn’t even faze me. In fact, I felt better after working through the night, than I do after lying in bed staring at the ceiling.
Anyway, the fourth night (last night), I bumped the goal back up to 2¾ hours, figuring that there’s no way after sleeping only 4 hours in the past 72 that I was still going to have trouble making that. And I was right. I finally slept the whole time. This is the first point at which I truly felt like my sleep was “restricted”, and hope that’s a good sign.
So tonight (#5), the goal is 3 hours and, according to the article, every night, I'm increasing the goal by 15 minutes unless I “stall out” again. At that rate, if the program works, I’ll be up to 7 hours a night by a week from next Thursday. I haven't slept like that in years. What a great way to start the new year!
By the way, I had a doctor’s appointment today and was going to tell her about what I was doing. However, she canceled. Won’t she be surprised if the next time we meet, I tell her that I no longer will be needing her pharmaceutical potions?
This blog is about music, health, challenges, determination and personal and professional growth. I hope it is useful.