After a three-day jaunt of stomach virus, I blinked my eyes this morning and realized I had been asleep for almost 48 hours solidly. I can hardly remember what I did, yesterday, I was so out of my body and out of my mind. When your body aches, the natural instinct of the spirit is to let go of the body and it’s pain and sleep.
This is how we heal naturally. Some people, however, will not let go of their bodies for fear they may die. Their fear of death outweighs the desire to get well.
In yoga the final pose of the asana, the movement portion, is call svasana. It means literally, corpse pose. You would have to wonder why the Ayurvedics decided that at the end of a hard workout you would need to be as still as a corpse to allow for your cells and your mind to memorize and absorb all the good work you have done in the workout.
The Vedic principals were fairly simple when broken down to the bare bones: if the human body is out of the way, then you will experience God, the creator. If you are made by God, you must essential be made of God. So, the breath—which keeps the body alive—held great importance to them. If a yogi could almost still the breath and find herself hovering over the body in a mock sleep and still be awake enough to experience the bliss, she hovered in the realm of God.
So, not letting go of the body from fear, could be a way that you prohibit yourself from healing. Most insomniacs have some fear of being out of control, so sleep alludes them. Primarily, sleep is when you are not in control at all. In fact, needing to be in control could cause a myriad of problems while you sleep.
In sleep, my goal is to put my body to rest with progressive relaxation or focus on the breath to quiet the body. I often imagine that my breath progressively retreats toward my feet. In other words, I imagine breathing from my mouth, then my heart, then my belly, then my knees, then my feet. When you can get your attention away from you head and thinking deliberate thoughts, often you allow your mind to quiet enough to sleep.
I have dealt with insomnia for many years. In fact, I got hooked on Ambien after a stint of being just fine with sleep. I suppose, if I look back, I can find the hook that got me stuck in an insomniatic loop of sleeplessness. Most people have some kind of anxiety that keeps them away while thinking deliberate thoughts. “What am I going to do without him? How will I pay the bills? What will I do to be the most prepared for work tomorrow?” You can’t sleep while you are in your deductive mind. It’s impossible. So, your mind might be awake, while your body is asleep, which usually is the case for insomniacs.
We go into a sort of trance state, and when the mind begins to get more anxious it wakes us from moving in the direction of sleep. Also, having a weak bladder can also contribute to insomnia. I know in times like that, I’m up about 3-4 times in a night in the bathroom.
To calm the issue of a weak bladder, you could take a mild sedative or an anxiety medication to keep your body feeling tired. This will lead you toward sleep. But, if you haven’t worked out your anxiety, you probably will find that it doesn’t matter how tired you, you won’t sleep restfully.
I have gone through this. I know from which I speak. Now, when I go to sleep, my mind must be clear and ready for rest. I take quiet time between watching television and going to bed. I usually do a set of relaxation exercises or stretches from yoga for about 15 minutes before I lay in bed. I do NOT have a television in my bedroom. If you have one, get rid of it. You may be ignoring sleep problems or even creating them by having a loud television blaring in the background of solid sleep. This scenario isn’t a good one.
Ultimately, if you have struggles with sleep, I would go to a hypnotist. The process of being self-hypnotized is the exact process the body needs for sleep. You probably have to teach yourself how to rest, as your body and mind have unlearned what naturally is a gift.
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Bo Sebastian is a Hypnotherapist and Life & Health Coach, available for private sessions to QUIT SMOKING, Lose Weight, New Lap-Band Hypnosis for Weight Loss, CHANGE YOUR MIND, CHANGE YOUR LIFE! at 615-400-2334 or www.bosebastian.com. Please feel free to comment and/or sign up to receive your blog sent to you directly or stream with an RSS Feed.
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