Wednesday, April 6, 2011


Insomnia is a common problem and a distressing one. A lack of sleep can have a negative effect on how we feel, and how we function the next day. If this becomes a chronic problem it is exhausting. Sleep is necessary to rest the body and the mind. Most adults need between seven and eight hours per night. However, many get along on six hours or less and many also seem to require nine or ten hours sleep. Sleep needs change with age. An infant may sleep up to 18 hours a day. Children often require 12 hours each night. Older people find they need less sleep than they once did. The amount of sleep doesn't matter if you feel rested and well.

There are several things you can do to regulate your sleep patterns.

1. Plan your bedtime as carefully as you would a gourmet meal. Go to bed at the same time every evening to establish a pattern. Visualize, ahead of time, the comfort of being in bed sleeping. Spend the last hour before bedtime relaxing and unwinding. If you watch TV make sure you watch a calming or funny program rather than an exciting or scary show.

2. When you get in bed enjoy the comfort of lying down. Stretch your arms and legs and then let go to relax your body more. Do this several times. Take deep breaths and enjoy further relaxation of your body.

3. Think of a Bible verse or a prayer that is comforting to you and repeat it over and over in your mind. For example, say “The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul.” Repeat this over and over and picture a pastoral scene, resting in God. You can vary the scripture or think of the attributes of God alphabetically or the names of God. Keep going until you fall asleep.

“Stand at the crossroads and look: ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls.” Jeremiah 6:16

Blessings, Dottie

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