Can you think you're awake when actually you're asleep?

Posted 10 Mar 2011 at 4:09 PM
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  • Sleepio Member

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    Graduate

    I seem to be getting by with very little time in bed, as I have to get up soon after going to bed. Wondering if I'm going to crash and burn soon.

  • Sleepio Member

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    Graduate

    Hopefully you will fall asleep sooner with the build up of your sleep pressure. Are you having to get up so soon after going to bed because you're not tired at the start of your SW? If that's the case, you could shift it to later if that will also work with when you need to get up.
    Angie

  • Sleepio Member

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    Session 4

    I experience this feeling all the time, like I am up the entire night in a very conscious kind of “sleep” – but then I'll recall dreams but almost like I am dreaming but also conscious of being awake. It's a very strange feeling but the one thing that is consistent is that I wake up feeling anything but refreshed. I feel exhausted! Nice to see I'm not alone in this bizarre half-sleep!

  • Sleepio Member

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    Sounds like an interesting site vsj. I will check it out.

  • Sleepio Member

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    Graduate

    No you are not alone for sure kjune. There is an article you can search in the library: can you think your awake when actually your asleep. Also, I asked the expert Dr. Kristy Horne about this “Twilight Zone” as I call it on the October 30th forum. Her answer was very informative and gave lots of food for thought. You can look up her response by going the the community page and go to the older postings. Good luck!

  • Sleepio Member

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    Graduate

    This is one of the hardest things about this sleep business. During the first part of the night, I know I am sleeping soundly. But during the second part of the night, when I am not sleeping as soundly, I often don't know if I am awake or asleep during part of this time. That makes the sleep diary inaccurate, but that's to be expected. I have to laugh at myself filling out the sleep diary when I get to the part about how long did the awakenings last. Hah!

    Sometimes I remember that I dreamed during this time, so I had to be asleep! Clearly, anxiety about whether or not I am sleeping during this time makes things worse, so I try to downplay it. In my case, it's not worth my getting a tracking device and dealing with that, but some of you might have a positive experience about this. Bottom line, I have a hunch that we get more sleep than we think we do. When time permits, I will read more of your posts and see what Dr. Horne had to say. “Pseudo sleep”? I can become obsessed with these details if I let them get to me!

  • Sleepio Member

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    I know what you mean about the sleep diary. It really does become a guessing game. We probably do get more sleep than we think. Dr. Horne said that for her there seemed to be a correlation between her “pseudo sleep” and anxieties or stressful events going on in her life at that time. I have been trying to see if this is the case for me too and I think it might be.

  • Sleepio Member

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    My whole post just disappeared! Why does that happen? Accidentally nudge a wrong key and then poof, into thin air!

    I find that if I think I've been awake a long time, I try to figure out how long I think I've been awake and then check the clock. If the time passed is longer than what I had expected, I realize I must have been asleep. And of course, I am really awake when I'm doing this, as I'm thinking logically or so I think I am! I'm not recommending checking the clock. During one expert session, the Dr. suggested that if you can do something like look at the window and remember it the next morning, you were probably awake.

    In estimating how long my awakenings are, I use a standard 15 minutes, unless it feels like it's been longer, then I increase it to 30 or whatever makes sense to me (always wish there was a 20 minutes option). But I don't worry about it too much as it's just a record after all. I know if I've slept well or not based on how long it's been between wake-ups compared to feeling like I'm not sleeping. Long time between wake-ups = good night. Short time between wake-ups = fair night. Light sleep where it feels like I'm not sleeping = poor night.

    Angie

  • Sleepio Member

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    Thanks, Dion. I agree that filling out the diary is a common problem but not one that need worry us. And, yes, there is uncertainty about whether or not we sleep. Angie has much to say here about this. Let's look at it carefully.

    I agree with the good doctor that anxieties play a role. That probably accounts for my sleep last night. Also, I re-read what the good professor had to say about this in several of his library articles, and yes, it's clear that we do tend to underestimate the time we are actually asleep!

    That helps explain it. But it is still bothersome.

  • Sleepio Member

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    Angie,

    I have had the same experience you had with posts disappearing. I didn't have a clue. It seemed to happen right after I finished composing it, so that gave us a clue. Zach, my older son, asked me to show him how I used the mouse, and he said that the mouse has a touch that enables you to go back to a previous webpage. I had no idea it was built in to the mouse! He disabled this feature on my mouse and that seems to have corrected the problem. See if you can disable this feature on the screen that tells you which features you want for your mouse. If that is not enough help, I can ask Zach for more details.

    I will read your post and think about it.

    Thanks,
    Jim

  • Sleepio Member

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    No I don't have that feature on my track pad – no mouse. I'm sure I accidentally touch something. I've lost emails that way by moving my finger to the bottom and poof, it's gone! I just discovered today that tapping the address bar twice closes the window. Who knew?
    Angie

  • Sleepio Member

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    Hi Angie. I also get that ..poof into thin air… at times. It is very annoying. I know that it is something on the keyboard that I touch but I don't know what either. Thanks for the reminder to look at a window to check to see if your really awake. I had read that but forgot about it. I also don't like to look at the clock but as an experiment I have looked at it when I wake up (yes I am awake) and then laid back down to go back to sleep. I feel like I am not really sleeping BUT when I look at the clock again an hour or so has gone by. I know that I have not been awake that long so I must have gone back to sleep even if it is in the early stages. I think I have finally stopped worrying about the exact times of being awake and being asleep. I can usually feel what kind of sleep I have had as soon as I wake up and I am beginning to tell the difference between being fully awake(it's going to be really hard to go back to sleep) and just partially awake(I will probably drift off quick). I really like the way you look at sleep …..long time between wake-ups=good sleep etc. It is simple but true.

  • Sleepio Member

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    All great words of wisdom. It is amazing how I know all of this in my head but seem to forget it all when I have had a bad night and become anxious again. Hopefully with time these wise ways will becoming the new habit.

  • Sleepio Member

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    I would say 99% that sleep is controlled by our emotional stress levels. Learning to control these is very difficult, even with all the Sleepio techniques. Breaking lifelong habits needs dedication and belief. Mind you, I do feel very sorry for people with chronic physical conditions who can't sleep due to pain. I have a few friends with extremely painful arthritic illnesses who suffer with awful sleep problems. Getting on top of head issues seems nothing compared to a lifelong physical illness. I keep having to make myself put things into perspective.

  • Sleepio Member

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    I certainly agree with all that you have said Jazz Enigma. I have come to realize that most of my restless nights are due to racing mind over some emotional stress due to family, work, world events etc. If I realize that I have had a bad day in these regards, then writing my worries and what, if anything, I can do about them the next day and the good things and bad things that happened during the day usually helps. I am also very grateful that I don't deal with chronic pain at the moment anyway.

  • Sleepio Member

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    Hi Dion, thanks for your reply. I've printed some of the sheets off downloads and will see if that helps. I'm going on a Mindfulness Retreat today. My dear friend comes with me; she is the loveliest person you could wish to meet but is fighting serious secondary cancer. I am angry and upset that someone so good, who should have decades of life ahead, is having to cope with the awful treatment yet again and come to terms with her mortality. I should be able to sleep knowing that I am the lucky one but the thought of what other people have to go through makes my mind whirl with the unfairness of life. I lost one of my best friends last year. She suffered for 12 long years with MS and spent the last four in a Leonard Cheshire Home. It was so cruel, especially for her parents and young children. It was interesting that you wrote about world issues as I get quite affected on this score too. You sometimes feel such a weight. I am constantly picking myself up though as I'm a half-pint full girl. Life is a journey…..got to make it as good as possible for the people we love. X

  • Sleepio Member

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    Graduate

    I am tracking my sleep with a Jawbone UP. Last nigh at dinner I drank more wine than I normally would, let's say two plus glasses white wine. Much of the night I felt conscious, but not enough to get out of bed. My UP says I slept all night, just between light sleep and deep sleep. I realize now that I am often aware or conscious during sleep, such as early sleep. It's not as restorative as deep sleep but it is brain sleeping.
    Make sense?

  • Sleepio Member

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    Graduate

    I've been using a jawbone UP too, and it's been really useful as it nearly always shows I'm getting more sleep than I think I have. Personally I've found this reassuring and has helped reduce my anxieties around sleep as I know the reality is I'm getting more sleep than I thought I was, as a result I'm coping with days following nights where I haven't had loads of sleep much better than I was. No massive improvement in my sleep yet but I feel more positive. Fingers crossed things will begin to get better! I'd be pretty sceptical about my ability to accurately fill in the sleep diary without it.

  • Sleepio Member

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    Session 4

    I feel exactly the same ? How do you feel now, have you gotten better ? I also saw a doctor and she is link you look perfectly normal, your eyes arent red , you dont look tired and so on… But I really feel my quality of sleep is bad. Please tell me more about your experience.

  • Sleepio Member

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    Session 3

    I realized I was sleeping early this morning, when I thought I wasn't due to the images that were going through my head.

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