Tips For Sleeping While Anxious | Anxiety Insomnia

Lately my anxiety has been ridiculous, like usually I can control my anxiety so well and I know when its creeping up on me, like I've gotten to a point where I can recognise the signs in myself, so I like get ready for battle. But over the past probably two or three weeks I've been so anxious and nervous and restless for no apparent reason what so ever. There is nothing that I can think of that makes me think "oh yep thats why my anxiety has been going crazy." It seems like every little thing is a building block and it ultimately just builds this wall of anxiety and stress that I just cannot seem to jump over.

I am completely over sleepless nights with thoughts continually going around in my head about the actual dumbest stuff- and I've noticed in the past few weeks I've been having a lot more vivid dreams as well. Not just one a night either, it will be many little dreams that all link together. So, I'll eventually fall asleep, have one dream, something in the dream or my thoughts will wake me up, eventually I'll go back to sleep and one aspect of the previous dream will continue into a whole new dream- its an endless cycle of waking up, going back to sleep, dreaming, waking up again. 

My sleep has always been one of the first things affected by anxiety- but never this bad before. Seriously I'm talking waking up every two-two and a half hours every night for the past two-ish weeks, I am currently running on empty. I am in desperate need of a complete, solid nights sleep. I am trialling a few methods of decreasing my anxiety before bedtime in order for me to have a better nights sleep- at the moment I haven't been successful but I can see why they would work for other people, so I thought I would give them a share. Honestly, if I was just in one of my normal anxiety phases where I was just a little bit stress and a little bit anxious and only having attacks every so often I am confident these methods would help me- it's just how shitty I've been feeling lately that I think is a real barrier to anything helping me at this point. But without further ado- let me tell you some of my best 'actually getting a decent sleep while highly anxious' hacks.

  • Herbal tea. I posted this on my Instagram last night (@theintrovertarchive if you missed it), but lately I have been drinking Twinings 'Sleep' tea- I guess that is what you would call it? I mean you could always buy one of those expensive Instagrammable teas- but this one is seriously $3.50 from Coles and I think it does the job just as well as the $25 ones that are on social media. There is also a 'Calm' infusion that could also help, its on my shopping list for tomorrow. The 'sleep' one is camomile, orange blossom and honey and tastes delish!! I have one these every night as I lay in bed while Brodie is watching TV- it's just very soothing- it soothes your insides. 
  • Write out whats bothering you. Alright this one definitely might not help for everyone, I know because it never really used to work for me. I would write out everything that was bothering me and then I would get really overwhelmed by the amount of shit I had just written down. It works for me (only every now and again) when I am in a headspace that I can write down everything on my mind- look at it and think "right thats stuff for me to worry about tomorrow right now there is nothing I can do about it." As I said, only works every now and again, a lot of the time I get very overwhelmed and start to panic about it all being laid out in list form. 
  • Reading before bed. I have of late started reading a few chapters of whatever novel I have been reading before I go to sleep. I've been really enjoying reading fiction books where I can be in the story and be completely transfixed on the storyline, not worrying about the outside world. I usually try to read until I cannot physically keep my eyes open any longer and am sure that once I put the book down and my head on the pillow I am going to crash, it's like a trick to not give my mind enough time to go into anxious mode.
  • Get out of bed. If its a really bad night where I just cannot fall asleep I try not to lay in bed awake, which is easier said than done considering how cold it has been lately- but if I lay there staring at the ceiling and listening to Brodie snore I just get made at him for actually being able to sleep and end up kicking him in the leg or something silly. If I do get out of bed I avoid technology- I don't take my phone with me, I don't reach for my laptop (however tempting it is to use this time to get some work done), I don't watch TV. I grab a book, or a sudoko puzzle from my shelf and make a deal with myself "one puzzle and then back to bed" or "one chapter and then it's time to go to sleep." I find that because I have set myself the limit I am more prepared to go back to bed and more likely to go to sleep.
  • Herbal sleeping tablets. This is only one that I have resorted to in the last week or so but I thought I would mention it for the sake of being transparent. I found these in my local chemist for around $17 and its the Sleep by Remifemin tablets. Now these can be used during the day for nervous restlessness or at night for sleep obviously. I did do my research before I started taking them as I do with most things I consume, but I would recommend doing your own before trying- obviously I haven't had any nasty side effects (or I wouldn't be sharing them with you) but your body is different to mine. They haven't made me wake up feeling like I hadn't slept at all which was a big problem I had when I tried medical sleeping tablets (hence why I don't use them anymore.)
  • Change ends. This is a weird one, but it used to help me so much when I was anxious in high school (year twelve especially)- change which end of the bed you're sleeping at. Usually chucking my pillow at the foot of the bed and sleeping there helped me out for a night but there was definitely periods where I would sleep at the complete opposite end of the bed for days on end because I was just getting a better sleep because the association of bed and going to sleep wasn't there- because I didn't feel like I was in bed. 
  • Don't look at the clock. While you're laying awake at night avoid turning on your phone to look at the clock, or if you have a digital clock next to your bed- turn it around. I find that looking at the clock stresses me out more because then I start thinking about how long there is until my alarm. 
In times of anxiousness these tips have really worked for me and hopefully they'll work for you too!


  1. Great post. Taking sleeplessness supplements really cures insomnia problem and it is not habit forming.


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