#NHBPM – At present.
Three of the relaxation techniques I use to attempt sleep…
- I let myself go limp all over. I close my eyes. Slowly, I tell each part of me that it is okay to go to sleep. Toes, feet, ankles, lower legs, knees, upper legs, hips, torso – then fingers, hands, lower arms, elbows, upper arms, shoulders, chest. I close my ears. I close my nose. Finally I tell my brain to shut off. Does this work? Not all the time… but then I make a conscious effort to focus on the closed eyes, closed ears, closed nose to stop seeing, hearing, and smelling. Eventually the brain shuts off as a result.
- Counting to one hundred in German, my second language. I remain so focused in trying to remember how to pronounce each word that I lose all that is around me (again – all the sights, all the sounds, all the smells).
- More recently, I start placing myself somewhere else. At a family member’s house, where I have been able to sleep well. Thinking about who is in the house with me, feeling comforted by the idea that I am near my loved ones. Or sometimes, bringing myself back to a Chicago hotel room stay in 2003 for work. Exhausting trade show days led to awesome nights worth of sleep in the most comfortable bed I have ever experienced. I will never forget how as soon as my head hit the pillow each night, I fell right asleep. It seemed like the next moment, the alarm went off with a sense of fully rested. The recapturing of that week in that amazing bed can work wonders even if my own bed does not nearly compare.
This post was written as part of NHBPM – 30 health posts in 30 days.