Upon Crashing

14 02 2008

Been having trouble sleeping lately. Not napping — sleeping.

“Sleeping” I define as getting into my PJs, crawling into bed, and trying to fall asleep for 7 hours so I can wake up and go to work in the morning. Unfortunately, the ‘falling asleep’ part has been eluding me lately. If I was working on some coding project right before retiring my brain will be going too fast and be too engaged — but even when I try to stop an hour before bed and just chill, I’ll end up with like 5 seconds of some song looping over and over in my head. Even if I wasn’t listening to music before I went to sleep.

Some part of me seems afraid to go to sleep. Not “ZOMG GUNNA DIE” but either the part of me that hated being put to sleep for surgeries, or to put ye childhood trauma aside, the part of me that just wants to make the most of the day despite knowing it needs to call it a day. That part keeps me alert when I should be drifting off and it’s very annoying.

Oddly, this is not a problem on the weekends, when I’m maintaining my natural 2/3am – 11am cycle of downtime. I sign off, go crash, and sleep pretty quicklike. And even odder, this is not a problem for nappies.

When I’m on the couch, not in bed, and watching TV, I tend to lose focus rapidly and shut off the TV and roll over and ZZZZZZZ for an hour or two. It’s inevitable. I don’t do it EVERY night, but I know if I go relax, it’s probably gonna happen. No problems whatsoever going to sleep there.

Not sure what to do about it. Maybe sleep on the couch? It’s not as cozy. Go to bed earlier? I’d probably just end up insomnia’d back to normal. Search me. But it is a pain.

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9 responses

14 02 2008
riskygamble

I have this problem too sometimes… especially when I know I’ve got work the next day, or something ‘important’ to do. What helps me a lot is music! I made a list of relaxing songs on my wee ipod nano and put on the headphones when I get into bed.
One that always puts me right to sleep is Wasis Diop – “Everything Is Never Quite Enough”. It’s even better with a CD of ocean sounds behind it. I used to turn up the heat, turn out the lights, and listen to that when I felt stressed. BAM! Instant ‘relaxing on a summer beach’.

14 02 2008
annepackrat

Cut down on caffine maybe?

14 02 2008
Stefan "Twoflower" Gagne

I’ve done that, though. My normal foods don’t have a lot of caffeine, and the only super-caf I get is 1-2 Pepsi Ones a day. I did an extensive LJ post about that a few weeks ago but determined I’m still not getting as much caf in my system as people who drink two cups of coffee a day. It’s not nearly enough to really make a difference.

14 02 2008
Stefan "Twoflower" Gagne

Music, I gotta be careful with — once I get some stuck in my head it’s there and constantly looping. It’d have to be music that isn’t “catchy” in any way whatsoever, just purely relaxing.

14 02 2008
annepackrat

I’ve just noticed a big difference in one bottle of Diet Pepsi myself. Maybe sugar as well is a culprit? I know Pepsi Ones don’t have any, but others may.

14 02 2008
delfina

What about drinking herbal tea before bed? Like chamomile?

14 02 2008
Stefan "Twoflower" Gagne

Don’t like tea, and I doubt it’d do my acid reflux very well. Anything I eat or especially drink right before bed is danger territory.

14 02 2008
lirazel

I find re-reading something I’ve read before and know well to be the best drift-off-to-dreamland stuff. But I gather, from previous posts, that your SOP sleeping posture might not allow that?
It gets bemusing when re-re-re-re-re-reading a book like Cryptonomicon though–the current soporific–I mean, my eyelids are drooping over Goto Dengo and the cannibals, f’r Crissake!
Anyway, the point is to read something that you know well but that has enough of interest to engage the surface of your mind, those jabbering thoughts.

14 02 2008
delfina

Herbal tea, specifically the tea I’m recommending, has no caffeine. Ideally you would mix peppermint and chamomile together – this mixture also has a calming effect on stomach upset, too.
According to this article it even helps with IBS!

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