What to do when you wake in the night

Hi, does anyone have any tips on ways to get back to sleep after waking in the night? I regularly wake between 2 and 3am like clockwork and find it hard to go back to sleep, I get very light sleep only. Is progressive relaxation the best way? I read getting up out of bed can be good too.

Posted 5 Apr 2013 at 8:52 AM
  • 5 helped


  • Sleepio Member

    • 212 helped

    Since you are on Session 2 John, you have not yet reached the vital part of the course which will teach you so much about everything and open up resources for you.
    Progressive relaxation is very good indeed. Works for me. So is getting out of bed until you feel sleepy. Hang on in there.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 2 helped

    Ideas for falling back to sleep until I progress in Sleepio?
    I have tried listening to hypnosis for sleep on ipod
    Deep breathing
    Progressive relaxation
    But my mind wonders back to concerns and To-List
    I eat healthy, exercise and do yoga for stress…
    Open to ANY new ideas you have!

  • Sleepio Member

    • 24 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member

    Hi NNH, sounds like you already have some great relaxation and wellness tools to work with. I as well have done many of the same, even before Sleepio. You are still in the early stages of the program and there will be more tools and guidance from the Prof to help deal with the active mind, such as the “Thought Checker”, and “Putting the day to rest”. Here are a few additional ideas that I used which was helpful:

    Sleep Pillow – a free app on iPad that offers several nature sounds that you can set a time to (10 minutes, 20 minutes) my favourite is the “lapping” lake sound.

    Headspace Meditation – a 10 minute beginner daily meditation which is convenient and effective. This is found on-line/app with a free 10 day trial.

    Dr. Andrew Weil, MD, a cd (or iTunes) of various breath exercises. The most effective is the 4-7-8 breath which I do on a regular basis. These breath exercises take a little practise but worth the effort.

    Guided relaxation CD by Eli Bay, “Sleep”, has two guided 23 minute segments, “Imagine a space” and “Sleep Nauturally”.

    The CD, “Healing Sleep” by Brain Sync, Kelly Howell – this flowing music is designed to balance the brainwaves.

    This may not appeal to everyone but works for me is – self massage around the head, temples, face, feet, arms, with aromatherapy oil, “sleep” blend.

    Hope this helps. Good Luck, NNH!

    PS: others in the Community here have highly recommended “Tired but Wired” by Nerina Ramlakhan, and, “Mindfulness: A Eight Week Plan for Finding Peace in a Frantic World” by Mark Williams. (Waiting to receive my order from a bookstore)

  • Sleepio Member

    • 60 helped
    in reply to Sleepio Member

    Hi NNH
    “Tired but Wired” by Nerina Ramlakhan (mentioned byLa Jean above) suggests that it's best to write your To-Do list at the end of the day's work or activity, when tomorrows tasks are still fresh in your head. I've also found the Sleepio putting the day to bed helps, especially listing the things which went well. It means I go to bed feeling satisfied with the good things of the day rather than angsting about the niggles of tomorrow.
    Anything to reduce anxiety about the next day – a major cause of sleeplessness. Good luck.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 15 helped

    Hi all –
    It would be great to see more posts on this subject. When I am out of bed hoping to get sleepy enough to try sleeping again, I listen to music and read or play solitaire. I choose easy listening, mindless music like the Carpenters, Burt Bacharach, etc.

  • Sleepio Member

    • 0 helped
    Session 4

    For session 3, if I wake up after 2-3 hours of sleep and cannot go back to sleep, should I leave the bed and come back when I feel sleepy? Also, what about when I wake up an hour before wake up time?

    Also, sometimes it is hard to figure out if I am light sleeping or trying to fall asleep. How should I address that?


  • Sleepio Member

    • 4 helped

    are you supposed to get up if you can't sleep?

  • Sleepio Member

    • 0 helped

    I used to read for at least an hour before bed but since being on the sleepio course have stopped that. I now take my dog out for a nighttime stroll, watch tv….I'm wondering what works for everyone else??

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