Journaling has many benefits. For those of us with insomnia and anxiety issues, it gets our minds off the fact that we are not sleeping or off of whatever thoughts are producing our worry or anxiety.
Three ways to use our journals:
1. Gratitude Journal: Keep an ongoing list of things we are thankful for. Studies show that gratitude is very healthy for us. What we appreciate appreciates. Focus on the good in our life and chances are we will attract more good.
2. Dream journal: write down our dreams. Our brains are processing a lot when we are sleeping. Over time writing down details of our dreams may tap us into our innermost, intuitive world and help us to know ourselves better. Developing our intuition can be a powerful tool to live life fully and do what is best for us.
3. Making Lists: Write down goals, things we want to do, places to visit, people to reconnect with, things we love, etc. Writing down lists and goals help give us a positive forward moving direction in our lives: momentum!
If you are awakened in the middle of the night by a dream (good or bad)- write down what you remember with as much detail as possible. Don’t be overly concerned with interpreting these dreams. Just write them down and let them go.
Warm milk does have small traces of calcium, tryptophan and melatonin- proteins and chemicals that are known to induce sleep. Mostly I think, though, we have warm comforting memories associated with milk. Mother’s milk. If it works, wonderful. I personally find warmed up almonds milk to be absolutely delicious and relaxing. Tea can have the same effect too. Perhaps just a warm beverage of any kind nurtures our bodies, spirits, and souls.
I read recently an article about couples who give their partners a warm beverage produce loving feelings in their partners. I know I feel loved and cared for when my partner brings me coffee in bed on a weekend morning. I sometimes do the same for him and serving him that warm beverage does induce i me very giving, loving feelings for him.
Sitting alone during a quiet time of meditation, I feel that I really am not alone with that warm cup of tea in my hands. God or spirit is with me…
In sum, a warm beverage such as warm milk, coffee, or tea can certainly be a comfort to us and help us to be calm, feel nurtured, and at peace. It is much easier to go back into a restful sleep in that relaxed state of mind.
1. Write down 100 things you want to do.
2. Write down 100 things you want to have.
3. Write down 100 things you want to be.
4. Write down what your life would be like if failure was not possible.
5. Write down your proudest achievement. How did that feel?
6. If you had just one year to live, what would you do? Who would you do it with? Write it down.
7.Get on the floor and stretch like a cat.
8. Try to remember and list all of your teachers starting from Kindergarten.
10.Write down as many things as you can that you are thankful for.
“Man should forget his anger before he lies down to sleep.” -Mohandas Gandhi
Are you angry? Holding onto resentment? This kind of thinking and emotion can keep us from getting a restful night of sleep.
Practicing forgiveness is the greatest gift you can give yourself. It frees up so much energy: physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual.
One way to forgive someone: Picture them as an innocent four year old child. Look at that little child in the eyes. Nurture and love that little child. Embrace them and let them go.
I did this a few years ago when I was so angry at our President. It was very healing to imagine him as an innocent little child just doing his best.
When we are in an anxious state we often have quick, shallow breathing. I have been in this state and end up almost hyperventillating. Be aware of your breathing and slow it down. Full, deep breathing. Relax.
Tense and release all your muscle groups. Breathe.
You are safe. Breathe.
Visualize all the colors of the rainbow. Breathe.
You are loved. Breathe.
You are supported. Breathe.
You are peace. Breathe.
Recently I was driving through a Starbucks after work for my Venti Latte for the long commute home. When I got to the cashier window, the young man said the people in the vehicle in front of me paid for my coffee. I said “are you kidding”. He said “nope”. I wanted to thank them but they had already driven away. So I asked that nice young man what the lady in the red sedan behind had ordered. He said a tall latte. I said I will pay it forward and I bought her the drink.
Driving away from that Starbucks I felt elated. I was so thankful for the kind random act that complete strangers bestowed upon me and it felt good to pay it forward and do the same for someone else.
So think of a random act of kindness you will do tomorrow. Write down your idea.
Write down as many things as you can think of that you feel thankful for. What a wonderfully blessed person you are.
Write down everything that is worrying you. The more details, the better. Imagine the absolute worse. When, finished, tear out this page from your journal. Throw it into the trash. Sip your cup of warm milk or tea and breathe. Just be.
Get out your journal and write “I Am Enough” as many times as you can. Sit up straight and tall. Keep writing. Think it. Feel it. Know it.
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