I’ve had insomnia for years.
It started in high school, but I did what any teenager would do and enjoyed the extra time to read or entertain myself. It was barely noticeable in college, since I followed the usual pattern of waking up too early and staying up too late.
It reared its ugly head after graduation, however. Suddenly I was working forty hours a week, cramming my social life into nights and weekends, and the lack of adequate sleep became quite obvious.
I changed my habits. I went to bed by midnight every night – even weekends. I planned fewer social events in the evenings. I established consistent evening and morning routines. But I still couldn’t sleep.
I would go to bed, then toss and turn all night. I would finally fall asleep, only to wake up less than an hour later. I would struggle to get back to sleep, only to drift off moments before my alarm went off.
I was so tired, and yet I couldn’t do anything about it. It was affecting my work, destroying my concentration, and ruining my social life.
Finally, I asked my doctor for help. She went through a series of questions, asking about everything from life events to medications to my normal sleeping environment.
Eventually I was diagnosed with chronic primary insomnia.
- Chronic meant there was difficulty most nights of the week, and for periods of time lasting longer than three months.
- Primary meant there was no obvious cause for sleeplessness (like poor sleep hygiene, medication, physical or mental stress).
- Insomnia meant, in my case, both trouble falling asleep and trouble staying asleep.
I have been reading about insomnia ever since, experimenting with ideas and investing in helpful resources, trying to improve both the quality and quantity of my sleep.
My new ebook, Rest for the Weary: Spiritual & Practical Tips for Better Sleep, is a small compilation of what I have gleaned and experimented with over the past ten years.
Rest for the Weary provides a word of hope and encouragement — not another round of medical advice.
It considers a biblical perspective of sleep and presents some ideas to consider regarding your sleeping environment, nightly routines, and snoozing habits.
Please note: I do not have a medical degree. I have never attended medical school, or studied medicine in any official capacity. I am not a doctor, nurse, or licensed practitioner.
However, I do have a healthy dose of common sense. I can evaluate different options and logically pinpoint what is worth trying – and discard whatever is faddish or not worth investing in. And I’ve had a chronic illness long enough that I know a bit about the human body, the natural rhythms and cycles, and what generally helps or hinders with energy and sleep.
Obviously, you are not me, and your body’s needs are not the same as my body’s needs. What helps me may not help you; and what does nothing for me may be the ideal solution for you.
But I promise you will find something in this book to help!
If you commit to experimenting with these ideas, possibly investing in some resources, and disciplining your mind and body — you will soon see the result of better sleep, better energy, and better health overall.
What are your favorite tips for better sleep? Share them in the comments or send a tweet with the hashtag #RestfortheWeary!