Hello, how are you doing? I have experience with insomnia, hypomania and mania, chronic pain, sedation on a bipolar cocktail, obstructive sleep apnea, and self-harm in the form of old, lumpy pillows. This post is about how to make yourself go to sleep when you don’t want to. It’s also about who has worth.
how to make yourself go to sleep
A housemate mentioned sleep trouble. Lately he’s stayed up longer than he wanted to on mastodon. In the kitchen, he told me that he’d asked a friend how to go to sleep when he doesn’t want to.
“What did she tell you?” I asked.
“She didn’t get back to me. She’s really busy going to school…”
He explained the good reason his friend didn’t have time to get back to him. Somehow she was worth asking the question.
I stood there, listening and kind. Somehow I’m not a person to ask.
Wow, I don’t toot my horn loudly. But how to make yourself go to sleep is a skill of mine. I see it as part of radical mental health, but it could be considered separately.
I’ve struggled with sleep much of my life, had parents who struggled with sleep, have a spouse with narcolepsy, and lean more toward mania than depression. Going to sleep is vital to my life.
Somehow this friend of my housemate knows about sleep and I don’t. It hurts, to be mis-seen and undervalued. But it happens to me a lot.
Here are some ideas for how to make yourself go to sleep when you might not want to.
Think of what would be best for your life. 10 to 4? 10 to 6? Midnight to 7? It might be worth the experiment. Commit just for a week. See if your life is better.
comforting pre-bed routine
Kind of like costuming for a ritual, pre-bed routine is something to get you in the mode / mood. Calm pleasure so you actually want to go to bed.
Shower, pajamas, chamomile tea? Asking a partner to touch your back in a circle, reading for a little while, gentle stretches, meditation. Self-touch. Prayer of thanks.
reward / treat the next day for going to bed at a desirable time
What would you like as a treat, for tomorrow? Visualize it. If you don’t know what would be a good treat for you, you can ask a friend who knows you well. You can also ask your inner child, your ancestors, your inner teenager what they would like for a treat.
Lavender, some calming essential oil blend, rooibos tea, wood smoke from the neighbor’s fireplace…
Magnesium glycinate, oatstraw tea, derivative of weed, or flat out weed. Half a glass of wine? Melatonin.
make bed a lovely place
I like clean sheets, good temp, Bunny, my favorite pillow. Keep what stresses you away from bed.
Sometimes I play hours of rain sounds from youtube. Nice especially when Ming is moving about, so he’s doesn’t wake me up.
believe your health matters
The biggest piece is believing my health matters, my life matters, and sleep isn’t optional. I’m here on earth for a reason. I want to stay here as long as I’m needed.
People try to improve their health in all sorts of ways Taking supplements, buying fancy exercise equipment, having a weird push pull with food…
Sleep is free. Dreams are amazing. A good night dreaming is better than any day fishing, working, or anything. In my dreams, I can do anything. Why not improve sleep?
back to housemate
My housemate had more sleep struggle and mentioned it again. Again I marveled at how other people are supporting him, and I’m not an option.
It bothered me, so I texted him explaining I have experience with how to go to sleep. I offered to share. He replied that it was one of many conversations he looked forward to having.
I emojied his reply a lil thumbs up. He can make the conversation appointment.
I need to be close to people who see my value, curious about who I am and what I know. This housemate talks 80% of the time in our conversations. I mostly listen. Sometimes he catches himself and lets me have a few sentences of airtime. It’s good he makes an effort? But I want to be close to people who see my worth.
Power in relationships is important. Trying to convince someone of my value is a huge waste of energy. I don’t do that anymore. Chasing my housemate’s respect (or anyone’s respect) is a waste of life.
Sleep is important. Respect is too.
Please ponder who you consider knowledgeable and valuable. Make a list of whose opinions you respect. Then look at their demographics. Maybe you could include more people who are not the same as you.
I realize this post is two big topics. It’s ok if you think they’re poorly combined. That’s a nice thing about this blog. New posts show up every day as if by magic.
Like the weather. If you don’t like the post, just wait a day.