Wednesday, October 13, 2010

What I do to fall asleep

I was poking my blog reader today and ended up on Need More Rage as I seem to quite often lately. And while trying to decide whether I wanted to leave a comment on his new pet I scrolled down to check out his sidebar. I like seeing what people have in their sidebar, and often I find new blogs through other people's blogrolls.

I scrolled all the way down, and instead of a blog I found this. I thought Ratshag was suspiciously active already! So when I clicked through to this page I started reading a little. Now, I have entered NaNoWriMo once. I didn't manage to finish my book within the month, but I did finish the book.

Of course I was way too insecure to actually do something with it back then, and now...well, I dream about becoming a professional writer, but don't we all?

Anyway, I joined up (in good time too, apparently gifst are handed out in November!) and looked around a bit more. They have a nice page of prompts, so I took the one of today and added it in as the title of today's post. Now I still have to find something to write with it.
I have to admit though, the first thing I thought when I read that prompt was what I was thinking before sleep yesterday. I was hoping that the patch would not turn the servers upside down today so I would be able to play a little on my day off.

Of course I forgot that I would have an enormous patch to install, even though I downloaded it before through the background downloader already. So I ended up hopping around, reading stuff, while waiting for my install to finish.

But yah, what do I do to make myself fall asleep at night?

Well, generally I just close my eyes and..well...sleep. But, sometimes, you know those nights, right? Those nights where you just toss and turn, and turn and toss, and then blink you open your eyes, check the clock, and it's half an hour later and you're still as awake as you were before.

Those nights I actually try to use my 'I'm heavy' technique.

It's a sort of meditation, and I have some variations to it, but here's the basics.

Just lie still in a comfortable position. For me I generally lie on my back, and make sure that my arms aren't rolled into the sheets or that a leg isn't properly covered, stuff like that.

Then I focus on my feet. And I start imagining that my feet become heavier. I can almost feel them press into the bed. They become so heavy that I cannot possibly lift them anymore. Still, they become heavier, like lead.

Then this spreads to your legs, your legs are becoming heavier. Your hips and body follow. You could perhaps still lift a finger, but the rest of your body is so heavy that it could not possibly move anymore. And then it spreads to your arms and hands too.

Finally your head and eyelids become heavy. So heavy, that even if you would've had a forklift, there's now ay your eyelids would ever be able to open again, unless you have a good night of sleep. Just let yourself drift away on the heavyness now, and usually by this time I'm asleep within minutes.

The other thing I find that helps is making your mind empty. Yaknow when stuff keeps going round and round in your head (I sometimes replay whole raids in my head while trying to get to sleep).

But how on earth do you make your mind empty? Well, with a little training it goes easier and easier, but when I started I used a countdown method.

Countdown from 20 to 0. Visualize the numbers being written before your eyelids as you count down. Not too difficult you might think.

Here comes the're not allowed to think about anything but the numbers while counting down. The moment another thought wanders in, start at 20 again.

I generally find myself asleep in about 20 minutes with this, without ever having reached zero at all, but the whole focusing on something not important means that I'm no longer focusing on thinking about beating Lich King.

Anyway, feel free to try them, and maybe you have other techniques to share?

Edit: Oh hey, thanks Ratshag! This might just help to get me in the mood for blogging more often :)

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