This is a place for Sleepio members to discuss non-restorative or unrefreshing sleep. Feel free to discuss any aspect of non-restorative sleep here including your experiences and any advice you may have!
I would love to hear from someone in a similar position to me, who went through the Sleepio techniques and found they really worked, as I need some inspiration.
I'm finding it really hard to muster the strength to actually apply the techniques – the sleep restriction window, getting out of bed after 15 minutes, not taking sleep aids, not falling asleep to a movie as I usually do. I'm just already so tired and so worried about the impact on my job of having even less sleep.
I function badly at work after poor sleep. My job requires a lot of brain work and when I can't focus that's it, I can't actually finish the tasks I need to finish and I have to get help from other people on my team. So I'm really struggling to apply the cognitive technique – saying to myself it won't be that bad. All I can really do is say something like 'I won't die because of it'. 'At least I'm not really ill right now'. But when it gets into the stuff about 'I do function ok' – it just isn't true in my case. In the longer term, I won't thrive in this career like this.
I also feel more than just sleepy the day after. I feel like I have a hangover and it's as if my entire body has something weighing down on it. I'd call it fatigue, and it's something close to pain throughout my torso and neck. It's so hard to tell myself 'a day of pain isn't so bad'.
I have sleep maintenance insomnia. I go to sleep ok, but wake up after 2-4 hours, and am awake for 2-3 hours before going back to sleep, or I don't go back to sleep at all. I usually listen to the same movie every night to fall asleep and sometimes I can use it to go back to sleep when I wake in the night. Usually I'm much more awake then though so it often won't work.
If anyone has done it for this type of insomnia I'd be especially glad to hear it.
I dont know if anyone responded to you as it is more than a month since you posted. I have in the past had the same trouble as you, waking during the night and not being able to get back to sleep for hours. I will say that the sleep restriction definitely worked for me, as I had a couple of months where I could wake up, two or 3 times a night & usually for the loo, and go straight back to sleep again with no problem. It was so good that I could hardly believe it – I stopped worrying about waking up as I KNEW from experience over and over again that i could just go back to sleep within minutes. My downfall then was that I stupidly tried to lengthen my sleep window quicker than was recommended, as I felt that I had cracked it, and it started going downhill again. But I am convinced that it works if you stick at it, and having let it all slip by the wayside recently, I am just about to get back into it again. But I think you really do have to stick to all the rules, which is hard I know. Maybe work your way through the various techniques with the Prof again and remind yourself of them – this is what I am going to do. They need to become automatic, so you can do them without too much effort. I hope things get better for you soon. All the best, and don't give up, we're all there with you!
Every sympathy! Its no good to me to say I coped yesterday so I will tomorrow – I don't call having the screaming ad-dabs at 4pm, crying, and being unable to think, or even decide whether I want to eat an evening meal or not, coping!
I am lucky in that I have retired so I don't have a full time job. I do (did!) however do freelance work, proofing and preparing articles for publication in an academic journal. I have had to give this up as I can't concentrate to do it effectively – too much 'brain fog'.
...However. I have used Sleepio for me. I am up at 90 % sleep as I go to bed and fall asleep more or less at once (always did) and I get up as soon as I wake in the morning. I keep being told to tell people how I have succeeded. I don't like to as the restricted sleep does not work for me and I don't want to discourage people from sticking to the rules when it works for them.
But you seem to have a different problem. I think it's worth analysing what is wrong in your life (stress, circadian rhythm, chaotic life style etc) and working out what you can do about it. i.e. I can't help having a retired husband (!) but I have given up two stress inducing jobs that had strict deadlines. This gives me the opportunity to attempt not to be 'on edge' all the time.
I moved my sleep window so I get up at the same time each morning – I think it says 6.45 (kept this time as I will be doing some work that I need to get up at 7 am for)- but I normally wake at about 8am and get up immediately.
I have also added 2 hours to the front of my sleep – i.e. I go to bed at 12 rather than 2am. I did nothing but fall asleep on the sofa waiting for 2am!
By doing this I have cut down on the frequency of waking and the time awake at night. After seven weeks I have had two nights this week that I do't remember waking up at all! (Moving my sleep window 15 mins was not what my body needed.)
Earlier I used the two relaxation pieces in bed if I was awake in the middle of the night.
I also see the suggestion of colouring in, and doing jigsaws when having to get up at night. I never knew what to do as it was cold and reading engages me so I stay awake when I read. Doing the dishes, cutting up apples to freeze and writing Christmas cards required more brain power than I had.
I also read somewhere that for ME lying down completely flat for about 10 minutes before getting overtired helps. It has helped for me. I now try this once or twice during the day instead of lying down and sleeping a hour and a half each afternoon. Would this be possible at your work? dozing in front of TV, or 'reading' a newspaper does not have the same restorative effect.
My next scheme is to try to go to bed (and sleep) at the same time each night. I think more routine in my life is probably the secret to better restorative sleep.
Sorry, I can't work forums. I seem to have 'published' this before I had read it through properly.
Best of luck.
Try to go into work to enjoy it – I find doing things I want to helps with the fatigue – also doing important things in the morning, when I can cope!
Unfortunately I feel exactly the same. I'm half way through week three and it's hard going but will try to tough it out. Good luck with yours
Hi Sleepio community,
Is there anyone who is knowledgeable in NRS that can help in the SF Bay Area? I have seen many sleep doctors/specialists and none ever mentioned NRS, I just learned about it on Sleepio: https://www.sleepio.com/library/article/how-to-get-a-good-nights-sleep
I don't have problems falling asleep or staying asleep, but I rarely wake up refreshed and I ruled out sleep apnea and others ailments. NRS seems the exact problem that I have. Also anyone with NRS that felt Sleepio helped? I just started
I have just one session to go before graduation. I am very impressed with the course and seem to have solved my first problem, ie getting off to sleep. Right from the beginning I have been able to manage it.
Because I was a little worried about the accuracy of my sleep diary, I invested in a tracker to compare my estimates with its data. Unfortunately it is a Garmin, so I can't sync. it to Sleepio, but find it interesting to compare. In general terms the data match.
It does indicate to me that most of my sleep is light.
I'm thinking that this accounts for waking unrefreshed.
I'm wondering what can be done about this.
Thank you Jinny.
The sensitive nature thing is very possibly true with me. I write narrative verse in which I flatter myself there is some poetry! ! No hope I guess.
I have been the same all my life, even in babyhood according to my mother…very light sleeper, she said.
I think after nearly 71 years, my brain has had enough and is starting to tell me so.
Thanks for your reply Jinny.
I used to get non-restorative sleep with ME. As the ME went I developed insomnia, and went from non restorative sleep to virtually no sleep. I've done really well on Sleepio, ...I had the usual upheaval at week 3, improved in week 4 and had a blip in week 5. Thereafter I improved, yet although I was beginning to sleep 6 hours a night I still didn't feel like I was getting any more than 4 hours. A few days ago I found a note I'd written in my diary. I think I wrote it after reading it in one of the expert sessions. It said “4 weeks after SR day function should improve”. It was then that I realised I had gradually, imperceptibly, improved. I'm at the point now where I'm getting 6 hours a night, and it feels like it too….it's not enough, but its a gazillion times better than no sleep at all.
Well, this is just a long way around saying that I think Jinny's on the money when she says “ride it out”, because I'm sure it will come good. If one of your problems has resolved, I think the others will gradually follow….you're on the mend.
I'm interested to know if you've noticed differences in your writing as your insomnia has progressed. When I used to have to write more I would keep a pen and paper by the bed because I used to think I was at my most creative when I was half asleep-half awake. I wonder too if one day you will look back and be able to track your recovery through your poetry.
All the best,
Helzbells, I have replied at length about this on your profile
There I discussed light sleep at length. I also talked about my data from Fitbit
Initially I felt Sleepio was more accurate because Fitbit counted lying still as being asleep. Now though I take more notice of Fitbit which logs restless periods and deducts them from total sleep time. The number of hours they calculate for quality sleep seems a more accurate indicator to me.
I understand the concept of improving the sleep efficiency but am having troubles with the shortened sleep schedule. My schedule before sleepio was to get into bed 10pm ish and wake at 6:30a. Sleepio schedule has me at 11:45 to 5:45. I am trying to stick to this but fall asleep on the couch earlier and cannot get out of bed in the morning. I need more than 6 hours of sleep. Is there another way of improving the quality of the sleep without out limiting the time?
I just started the course so still way to go and to learn.
I have a rather good sleep efficiency. But I can’t say that I have a good sleep quality.
At my tracker I see that I have more awakenings clearly than the average and I’m definitely below the average with my amount of deep sleep and REM. So I have a lot of light sleep.
I guess this affects the sleep quality? Sleepy tackles that later on?
Should I count the amount of awakening time that my tracker indicates although I often don’t experience this?
I don’t use a tracker, but I’ve read many posts on here, both from sleepios and experts, saying that trackers will think you’re asleep when you’re awake but not moving. Trackers can also think you’re awake when you’re just repositioning yourself while asleep. One of the weekly experts said to rely more on your own intuition and memory, and not so much on the device.
I know this is really hard, but try as best you can to not fall asleep on the couch before bedtime. Sleepio wants you to be dog tired when you get into bed in order to have the best chance of getting good sleep.
And getting up in the morning right when you awaken is important too. Again, hard, but all of this really works to increase your sleep drive, so you’re really tired when you get into bed.
Best of luck to you.
Sleepio has been really helpful in improving the amount of sleep I'm getting but the quality seems to be deteriorating in the last couple of nights- or rather I'm uncertain whether the state of being between sleep and awake during which I'm physically very relaxed, counts as sleep or being awake, which significantly affects the sleep quality percentage – any ideas please?
I really found the imagery task helpful in quietening my mind and getting a more restive sleep. I was skeptical at first as I'm not a “go to your happy place” person but it it seems to be working. Don't get discouraged if you have a couple of bad nights stick with your routine and things will improve.
I'm struggling with this program as it is not helping. I have had no problems falling asleep and my efficiency is high, but quality is very poor. Typically I wake up briefly very many times as I move from side to side in bed, then go back to sleep but not deeply.
I am tired all day, always on the verge of taking a nap, even fairly early in the mornings. I have increasing trouble focusing as the day goes on. By evening I am very short-tempered and frustrated with my kids and wife.
After more than 5 weeks there is no improvement and the sessions do not address this at all. I see a lot of people complaining about this same issue, but not a lot of actual advice or resolution. Does this program work for this problem?
I can really identify with what you said. I have been on the programme since April, and am beginning to think I am one of the 30% for whom it doesn’t work at all. I am constantly still only getting between 4 and 5 hours sleep a night, and finding it very hard to stay awake until after midnight. Going to bed much later than I used to do hasn’t made me wake any later in the mornings. Like you I am tired all day, and feeling a bit negative about it all. I had great hopes when I started, because I have been a bad sleeper for as long as I can remember, but I seriously feel like giving up on the programme.
Cleocat, I hope you do not give up on the program. I have had life-long sleep problems, and Sleepio has really helped. A lot of its value is in the negative thought checking. For me 4-5 hours of sleep is a moderate success. With anything less than 3 hours (rare for me now) I had my husband drive me where I need to go. I kept telling myself that Sleepio was going to work, that getting more than 3 hours sleep was progress. I didn't always adhere to the sleep window. Not sure the Sleepio folks would agree with me, but I think that not giving it 100% is preferable to giving up on something that in time will work. I hope you by now are doing better, but please give Sleepio more time.
I am so sorry that you were going through this. If you are not finding answers to your question in the community, it might be helpful to ask your question to the weekly expert. And you might want to ask the same question another week to a different weekly expert.