Focusing Tip #777 – “I long to be able to sleep better.”

Focusing Tip #777 – “I long to be able to sleep better.”
December 1, 2021 Ann Weiser Cornell
“My mind is so active at bedtime, mostly with anxious worries, that I'm having a hard time falling asleep.”

Focusing Tip #777 – “I long to be able to sleep better.”

Are you tired in the morning because of anxious thoughts at night? Read on…


A Reader writes:

So much is coming at us from all sides these days, it’s definitely affecting my sleep. My mind is so active at bedtime, mostly with anxious worries, that I’m having a hard time falling asleep. I wake up in the morning feeling tired, and that’s a bad way to start my day. I long to be able to sleep better!

Dear Reader:

Restful sleep is so important! I hope I can help you find it more easily.

If the barrier to restful sleep is an anxious, active mind, then probably Focusing can help.

In Inner Relationship Focusing we have something called “Self-in-Presence.” It’s a state of calm self-compassion, and it’s a lovely way to fall asleep! You can cultivate Self-in-Presence by acknowledging your anxious worries as “something in me that is feeling anxious right now.”

Rather than being anxious, you can be kind and gentle to the part of you that is anxious. Like giving a hug to an anxious child, this can increase your sense of well-being and resilience. By giving comfort to parts of yourself, you are also receiving comfort. So nice!

Here’s how:

One. Be aware of your body… especially what feels good. Like the feeling of being supported by the bed… and resting into that support. The soft weight of the blankets on top of you. Whatever you’re feeling that’s enjoyable, pause to enjoy and savor.

Two. When you become aware of an anxious thought, use this language to acknowledge it: “I am sensing something in me is saying ________.”

For example: “I am sensing something in me is saying that if I can’t sleep, I’ll be too tired tomorrow.”

Three. Now that you experience this as a part of you, it’s time to be kind and gentle to it. Say: “I know you are worried about that. I really hear you. And I’m here with you now.”

Four. Repeat as needed. The secret here is that the part doesn’t have to stop being anxious. It can be anxious… but you are not.

Five. In between being gentle with your anxious parts, go back to feeling your body, especially what’s comforting and enjoyable. Sleep will come.

 


 

Additional Resources

Focusing Tip #671 – “I feel tired all the time”(Opens in a new browser tab)

“I reassured the part that it could relax but…”(Opens in a new browser tab)

Working Through Anxiety – a 90 minute seminar

Self-in-Presence…and Parts – an on-demand course

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