Insomnia – How I Cope ( but not always !)
Insomnia is something we all suffer from at one time or another in our lives. It doesn’t discriminate. Male, female, any age, any social class and any place too. Personally I have had bouts of insomnia for many years. A lot of this was due to been a young mum of three children, when I worried constantly about their health. One of my daughters’ suffered quite badly from asthma as a youngster and I think my nervous anticipation about her next bad attack set off years of insomnia. Surely all mums must go through the same worries with young children ?
However my worst bout of insomnia started a few years ago with the onset of peri menopause. There was no real reason behind my inability to sleep. Sleep just didn’t come easy to me. The same pattern started to emerge every night. It wasn’t just one night every so often. It was every damn night. I would go to bed feeling tired and still be lying awake hours later. When I did eventually fall asleep I would wake up very early and still be awake watching the sunrise through the bedroom window. The frustration and tiredness soon set in and my day during daylight hours became unbearable. I became a living, walking zombie and so the inevitable depression set in.
It should be so simple shouldn’t it ? Feel tired, go to bed, fall asleep and wake up feeling refreshed and ready for the day. I think the more simple it seems, then the more frustrating it is when it doesn’t happen. I was lucky to be working from home when my worst bout of insomnia struck. I feel so sorry for those of you who suffer and have to go out to work full time. The constant fatigue and exhaustion is just so draining, both emotionally and physically.
For years I accepted my insomnia as part of me. It was something I had to live with. I dragged myself through each day, often falling asleep at my computer, drooling all over the keyboard no doubt. I tried everything to resolve it. Hot milk at bedtime, no food just before bed, hot bath and no stimulating TV programmes late at night. Did any of them work ? No, not really. I wouldn’t say these ideas are useless as they are definitely worth a try, but for me they didn’t really help.
I actually became quite anxious about going to bed and would worry about it from about 7pm. Yes, this became a self fulfilling prophecy as the constant worry probably aggravated the situation. Insomnia, together with all the other menopause symptoms I was feeling, really made me feel quite dreadful.
So, fast forward to the beginning of 2016 where I came across a possible solution to this long term problem. I had received a few sessions of hypnotherapy from a local therapist the summer before and found that it really helped my anxiety. The problem was that, once I had stopped the sessions ( my hypnotherapist retired ) my anxiety crept back. I therefore decided to try another way to use hypnotherapy, preferably at home.
And so, I discovered a British hypnotherapist called Glenn Harrold who had made many self hypnosis recordings for various situations. As well as anxiety Glenn produced recordings to help weight loss, fear of flying, self esteem, confidence, positive thinking and INSOMNIA ! I read the positive reviews from people just like me who had suffered for years and now found relief from these recordings.
Now I will be honest I was a little sceptical. So, you download the recording from the App Store on your phone, you listen for 30 minutes and you feel better ? Sounds too good to be true ? Right ? But what did I have to lose ? My anxiety was through the roof and I wasn’t coping very well with normal every day tasks. I had no confidence going out, driving or mixing in busy social circles. AND I wasn’t sleeping at all. It wasn’t much of a risk if it didn’t work as each recording cost about £2.99, so I downloaded a few and hoped for the best.
Listening to the recordings is easy. You just have to find about thirty minutes in your day, grab some headphones and sit in a comfy chair or lay on the bed. Hypnosis works by relaxing you until your subconscious is open to receive positive messages and thoughts. I am sure that there is more to it than that, but that is my understanding of it.
At my first few listening sessions to the anxiety recording I wasn’t really sure what had happened. I think I may have even fallen asleep. It was after about the third session that I realised I felt ‘different’. I wasn’t sure why this was or what it meant, but I was going out without my usual feeling of anxiety deep in my stomach. Those of you who suffer from anxiety will understand this knot of extreme tension in the stomach region where the panic symptoms seem to originate from. I was actually going out into shops without that dreaded feeling of panic and even enjoyed my outings. Was I happy about this ? I WAS OVER THE MOON HAPPY !
After trying the anxiety recording with success I was keen to try the sleep recording. I was actually excited to go to bed to listen to this, as I was confident by this stage that it would work. So I started the Deep Sleep recording with headphones in place, snuggled up in bed and I am thrilled to say it worked from the first session. I think I actually fell asleep before the end of the session to be honest as I cannot remember the ending at all. I slept through the entire night and woke up for the first time in YEARS feeling refreshed and energised.
I continued listening to Glenn’s various recordings for most of 2016 and then about a month ago I stopped. I guess I became complacent as I was feeling so good. I had little anxiety, I felt confident, I was sleeping well and I felt calm on most days. Yes, you guessed it ! Within a month all the old horrible symptoms crept back. My panic attacks started out of nowhere and my ability to go places ground to a halt. My lovely sleeping pattern went to pieces and I became tired and grumpy. Worst of all, my confidence plummeted, and during the month of October I felt at rock bottom again with the familiar symptoms of depression setting in.
I am actually glad that I took this break away from the hypnosis recordings, even though I felt terrible again. I needed the break to prove to myself that sometimes we do need help in balancing out our life again. It’s not a failing or a weakness. We all have issues that often we hide from others, especially when it comes to mental health. And we have to find ways to deal with these issues whether that be medication, counselling or hypnotherapy.
I am glad to say that hypnotherapy really works for me and my break from listening to the recordings proved that. I officially started back listening to my chosen recordings,( including insomnia ) on the 31st October which was just a few days ago. And on that night I actually had the most amazing good night sleep I have had in a few weeks.
For me, it’s a lesson learned. When something is working and giving positive results DO NOT stop ! I want to get back to my calm, anxiety free life full of glorious, refreshing sleeps so I can enjoy my life again. I am under no illusion that I am prone to anxiety, panic attacks and insomnia so I have to be aware that I might have a bad day every now and then. But I will never become complacent again about the power of hypnotherapy and how it can change your life. I can hardly believe I am writing this as I was SO sceptical in the first instance.
I have recommended these recordings to many of my friends and family and I know some of you reading this have tried them recently with success. If you have tried the recordings by Glenn please comment below. Let me know what you think. If you are struggling with any issues that possibly could be resolved by self hypnosis then why not give it a chance ? I will link below to Glenn’s website where you can have a read for more information.
Until next time dear friends.
Love Susanna xx