Linda Massoud, a 38 year-old mother-of-two and PR Manager for an IT company in Dubai, became moody and frustrated after months of sleepless nights.
My sleeping troubles began after the birth of my daughter, Carine, now four. She often woke up crying in the early hours of the morning. Soon I became a really light sleeper. Naturally, I worried about Carine – she seemed so much more sensitive than our son, Walid, eight. After six months of interrupted sleep, I was shattered, so I started going to bed as early as 9pm to catch up on lost rest, but all I would do is lay there, tossing and turning. It was incredibly frustrating. Around midnight, I'd get up and watch TV. By 3am I was completely exhausted, and eventually drifted off. Then around 6am, my husband, Marwan, had to get up to leave for work. He did his best not to wake me, but I would always stir.
Over the next three months, I was walking around like a zombie. My attention span was so short and I was always snappy. I always shouted at my kids and soon I began to hate myself. Eventually, I begged my doctor for some sleeping pills. Initially they worked, but the effect was short-lived. The pills made me feel drowsy during the morning and then they stopped working at night. I returned to my doctor and he suggested taking a higher dosage, and told me that drowsiness was simply a side-effect and there was nothing I could do about it. So, I stopped taking them. Instead, I followed my friend's advice and went to see a hypnotherapist called Debbie Beck. Initially I was skeptical; I had only seen hypnotherapists doing silly things on television. However, I soon changed my mind about the therapy.
Debbie was able to get to the root cause of why I wasn't sleeping properly. I was thinking and analyzing too much. I was worried about my job performance. I also felt guilty about always scolding my kids, never having fun. Plus, I was making life hell for Marwan. So at night, my mind never switched off.
Firstly, she reminded me that sleeping is one of the most natural things we do and we all need it in order for our bodies to repair and function well. She taught me to breathe properly; I didn't realise that I had been holding my breath which causes tension in the body. Then she put me into a light “trance” and taught me a visualization technique; my mind was taken on a journey to a beautiful lake where I swam in the water and felt all the months of tiredness washing away from me. When I opened my eyes, I felt much better and what I thought was 10 minutes with my eyes shut turned out to be 35 minutes, So this technique taught me how to relax and transfer positive thoughts to my subconscious mind so that I would fall asleep easily and effortlessly.
That night, I went through the same breathing and visualizing technique and unbelievably I fell asleep. I did wake up at 4am, but it was still an improvement. The next night, I drifted off almost immediately and awoke at 5am. However, over the next couple of nights, my mind started working overtime again, so I returned to Debbie. She worked on building my confidence and she reinforced the techniques. Now, six months on, I am sleeping better than I have in years. Instead of waking up feeling worn-out, I actually have some energy. Our home is now a much happier place to be; a sense of fun and calm has replaced the yelling. I only wish I had gone to see Debbie sooner.
”For more information about hypnotherapy, contact Debbie Beck on 050 655 0438.
TIPS FOR GETTING A GOOD NIGHT'S REST
Maintain a regular bed and wake time schedule.
• During an insomnia period, you naturally feel like going to bed earlier to make up for lost sleep time. However, if you're only getting five hours sleep, don't go to bed until five hours before your wake-up time. So if you have to wake up at 7am, go to bed at 2am. Then as you start sleeping better, move your bed time forward by 15 to 30 minutes.
• As tempting as it may be, don't nap the day after you've had a bad night's kip. When you feel sleepy, get up and do something.
• Use your bedroom only for sleep and sex. Having intercourse releases a hormone which helps promote sleep.
• Remove computers, televisions and work desks from your sleeping environment.• Sleep on a comfortable mattress and pillow.
• Avoiding caffeine and cigarette smoking close to bedtime will guarantee you a better night's kip
• Keep physically active during the day, especially after a bad night's sleep. When you sleep less, you should be more active in the day. Being less active is one of the worse things an insomniac can do.
• Strenuous exercise such as squash, swimming or jogging can promote a more restful sleep.
• Finish eating two or three hours before bedtime.
• Adding a few lavender drops to your bath can help.
Courtesy : Arabian Woman