I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia in 2012. The first thing I did was research what causes fibromyalgia and what are the treatments.
Like many people with fibromyalgia, I was pretty disappointed when I couldn’t find any concrete information. Fibromyalgia can feel different for each person. How they treat and manage it can be just as varied.
After researching and talking with my doctor, I came to a conclusion: my nerves were damaged in such a way that I was in pain often and my body felt exhausted from it.
At the top of my doctor’s orders was sleep. That advice sounded simple enough but in reality, how was I going to do this? I had to find a way in order to start healing. It may have taken awhile but I was able to find a way to fall asleep soundly. I want to share those steps with you.
- Tell yourself you are going to sleep. This mental message sends a needed signal. Just like positive reinforcement, you are telling yourself you are going to sleep instead of telling yourself you can’t sleep.
- Without a pillow, lay flat on your back with your arms at your sides. At first, I felt really uncomfortable laying on my back. What was causing the discomfort was tension in my lower back. It was the same tension that was causing pain during the day.
- Mentally picture each body part from your toes up to your forehead and physically relax each one. Do it more than once if needed. For example, that pain in my lower back would take a few attempts to relax but each night it got a little easier to let go of the tension. Another area that would surprise me, would be my shoulders. They are sometimes tense even when I think I am relaxed!
These were the first 3 steps I needed to follow in order to fall asleep. Then I found two useful tools that made this process easier.
- I found a good app by Deepak Chopra, MD to help with sleep. Although the app is no longer available, here is a video with the same instructions – A Sleep Meditation for a Restful Night.
- I was fortunate to win an eye pillow at a raffle. I had no idea how helpful this would be until I started using it. It provided just enough weight to help keep out any light and gently pressed against my eyes.
I hope these steps help you fall asleep. It may take several nights to get used to the routine so keep trying!
Do you have tips for falling asleep? Share them in the comments!