Awake at 2.44am?
Here we go again. I'm awake. I'm SO awake it must be time to get up. PLEASE let it be no earlier than 6.00am. Well, maybe I could do 5.30am. Oh God. It's 2.44am. WHY AM I AWAKE?!!
Yup. It sucks when this happens. Especially if you have a lot to do that day. It adds to the anxiety. And it can happen for all sorts of reasons. Maybe you're feeling a bit anxious about something that you've been trying to ignore when you're actually supposed to be awake, perhaps you're feeling unsettled generally or it could be the curry you had the night before didn't agree with you. Who knows. And 2.44am might not be the best time to try and figure it all out. Instead, here are some tips to help you get back in to a restful state:
1. Take your pulse
This isn't to get confirmation that yes, your heart is pumping abnormally out of your chest and you'd make a good donation to medical science. It's actually a way of reconnecting. We feel our pulse, hear the beat and it acts as a reminder that we're not alone. Do this for at least a minute and then for as long as it feels good.
2. Place your hand over your heart
Laying your hand on your chest, skin to skin is very soothing for our nervous system. Take a few breaths here and feel the sense of comfort that you're able to create.
3. Tap your chest
Take the four fingers of your dominant hand and gently tap on your chest. Good spots are just under your collar bone and on your sternum. As you're tapping, repeat 'I'm ok, I am loved' and any other words of reassurance that feel right for you. You might notice that you start to yawn which shows you're releasing some stress from your system. Hooray. Sleep is around the corner.
4. Listen to some soothing words
Listening to spoken word can be a great way to distract the mind and help you drift off. You don't want to over stimulate yourself so choose a podcast or radio show with an easy going subject/topic, have the volume on low and relax in to the sound.
And, if after all of that you're still awake at 3.44am and 4.44am and 5.44am, don't panic. You'll be ok. It's just a blip in the system and we all get those sometimes.
Take care of you.
Karen McMillan is a co-actively trained coach who specialises in supporting people through transition and change in their lives whether this be in work, relationships or ongoing personal development.