How To Sleep With Anxiety: My 1 Top Solution

How to Sleep with Anxiety ll My 1 Top Solution
How to Sleep with Anxiety ll My 1 Top Solution

Early this morning, I awoke feeling worried. I knew I had to get up in a couple of hours and write about how to sleep with anxiety.  Yet, coming up with ways to explain how to sleep with anxiety was far from the only thing disturbing my sleep.

Hundreds of ideas and questions were running through my head:

  • investment strategies

    How to Sleep with Anxiety
    Suffering from the “3:30 A.M. How to Sleep with Anxiety Blues.”
  • businesses I could start
  • people I’m concerned about
  • the meaning of life

and the list goes on. 

My mind and emotions were racing, and I guessed my heart rate and blood pressure were feeling the effects.  

I needed to calm my entire body – so I turned to the same technique I use to calm my 7-year-old son when he’s bouncing off the walls.

Right before dinner last night, he burst into tears and threw himself onto the couch. Not sure why he was upset, I called him over to me, lifted him into my arms, and let him cry into my shoulder. 

He didn’t want to eat the chili my wife had made. Instead of reprimanding him, I let him keep cuddling on my shoulder.

Then I grabbed my bowl of soup and sat down to eat with him on my lap. After taking a big bite, I placed one bean on my spoon.

He recoiled, but when I coaxed him to eat it, he did.

How to Sleep with Anxiety ll My 1 Top Solution
Loving encouragement can calm the anxious mind.

I swallowed another spoonful and then offered him a kernel of corn. Down it went! And with that, he jumped off my lap, returned with his bowl, and ate his soup.

During the entire exchange, I hardly spoke a word.

And the other day when I was working at my computer, he became angry about something. My wife asked me to handle it, so I called him to me. He marched into the room with a scowl on his face.

I reached my hands out towards him. 

Knowing the routine, he climbed into my lap. I wrapped my arms around him. We both sat there for a minute while I felt his body relax under my embrace. 

A minute or two later, when he’d calmed down, I spoke for the first time and encouraged him to listen to his mother. He hopped off my lap, and a moment later, I heard him apologizing.

At around 3:30 this morning, my mind was behaving like a hyperactive child. But instead of tossing and turning, trying to figure out how to sleep with anxiety, I took a compassionate approach.

How to Sleep with Anxiety: Parenting My Mind

Turning to my parenting technique, instead of forcing my mind to behave, I began calming it!

“I know you are excited right now. That’s wonderful. However, it’s time to calm down. Whether I sleep or not is beside the point, but I need to rest, so I’m going to focus my whole mind and body on relaxing.” 

Whenever it started to wander, I laughed and said, “There you go again, bouncing off the walls, let’s come back and focus on relaxing.” 

I concentrated on slowing my breathing down. To create a sense of tranquility, I even sang a few children’s songs! 

And before I knew it, I fell asleep! 

My Ode to Anxiety

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote this poem about anxiety. Because it expresses some of this post’s thoughts ( and with my Mom’s encouragement!) I’m sharing it here: 

At Peace with Anxiety

What am I feeling,

Anxiety, is that you?

I stood reeling,

But you helped me get through.

You first came

When I was a child.

Before a big game,

Or when life was beyond wild.

You would beckon,

Take the next step.

Each ominous second,

Prep, prep, prep.

You came to nudge,

“Do what is next.”

When my feet wouldn’t budge,

You made me stretch.

Always eager to help,

Plan for life’s calling.

So, why did I doubt,

Find you appalling?

I shunned you every day,

Instead of embracing.

I pushed you away,

But you kept chasing.

I’ve stopped running,

I want to know you now.

No more shunning,

Please endow.

I need your gift,

Because I’m a dream hoarder.

It’s time to shift,

Put reality in order.

Take my high expectations,

These unending lists.

My mental machinations,

Goals are not why I exist.

Thank you, my friend,

For showing me the means.

How not to spend

All my time counting beans.

Without you, where would I be,

Unaccomplished and unaware?

With you, I am free

To be somewhere, or nowhere.

Next time you arrive,

You have authority.

You can make me thrive,

Show me my priority.

I am enough,

We can do what needs done.

Everything else is just stuff,

Together, let’s have some fun.

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