Thursday, January 08, 2009

Better Sleep Action Plan

I had originally thought to write this post titled as “Insomnia Action Plan” but thought that it really set the wrong tone for my intention.  My intention isn’t to devise a plan for insomnia, my intention is to devise a plan for better sleep. 

This week, like many others before it, I’ve been having difficulty in getting a full night’s sleep.  It’s a problem I’ve dealt with on and off for years, but lately it’s been intensifying.  In the past, I’d go through short periods where it almost felt as though my body needed to reset.  I’d have a night or maybe two, where despite my best intentions, sleep would evade me.  Then I’d be fine and not encounter it again for months.  Now, it’s getting to be a problem that crops up several times each month.

So, L and I have finally had enough of it and are going to try to change things up.  So, my better sleep action plan is borne. 

The first thing we are trying is a media ban in the bedroom.  When L suggested this, I was surprised.  He is the type of person that usually sleeps best with some sort of background noise – music or a movie.  So, we have a computer in our bedroom just for such purposes.  But, it’s going to remain silent for an entire month, while we test out the effectiveness of the media ban.  Books, since they are also media, are banned as well.

So, any DVD watching, any book reading, any music enjoying will be done in other rooms.  For the next 30 days, the bedroom is for sleep and sex. 

I also have another part of the plan, that just affects me.  I’ve got an action plan for how to handle difficulty falling asleep.  I won’t bore you with all the minute details, but I’ve got different stages mapped out that are complete with sleep positions, visualization techniques, etc.  I’m hoping that having a plan like this will help to stem the tide of frustration and help me to feel more relaxed when the problem does come up.

Last night was the first night of no media and my own action plan and I didn’t have any sleep problems.  I’m hoping it’s the start of a trend.


The Nighthawk said...

Glad the first night went well J. This needs to be a topic of discussion on Monday, because Little D has been having difficulty as well, most of this week.

I'm also surprised it was L who suggested the media ban. I would also recommend a media ban anywhere from a half to full hour before bedtime, as well as the bedroom itself. I understand that helps alot too, though I mostly ignore it myself ;).

Genie Sea said...

According to Feng Shui philosophy, it is never advised to have any electronics in the room where you sleep.

Well, I don't and though I do not have trouble falling asleep, I have been having trouble staying asleep. That's because there is too much junk in the attic... If I can stop my mind from churning I might find rest.

Also, work hours are diametrically opposed to my productivity...

I hope your better sleep action plan stays firm and you find the rest you seek :)

Jenn said...

I forgot to mention another part of my plan! D'oh! I'm also not having any caffeinated beverages after noon. I know that seems early, but I'm sensitive to all types of drugs.

The chance of a media ban the half hour before bedtime is probably a more remote possibility. Especially since I don't really have a set bedtime that's consistent. Though, I may have to force myself to reduce before bed screen time and get off the computer and away from the tv and just stick to reading before bed.

Genie - it would be so hard to remove all electronics from the bedroom because that would mean I'd have to give up my alarm clock, which I've had for over a decade. I didn't realize how attached I was to the darn thing until the possibility of getting rid of it arose. It also has a very bright led display, which probably doesn't help me get a restful sleep either.

I also know just what you mean about too many thoughts going round in your head. A lot of the time I have a really hard time shutting my brain off!

Kim said...

Wow, good luck with this sleep plan! No media of any kind in the bedroom sounds like a good way to test out and see if that type of stimulation is affecting your sleep patterns. Best of luck getting to the root of your sleep problems!