I’ve had a hard time falling asleep for as long as I can remember. I used to lay awake for hours as a little girl staring at the ceiling because I just couldn’t shut my brain off. And now, even when stress levels are low and I’m not consciously worried about anything, I’m still THINKING when I get in bed and it’s hard to fall asleep.
And it doesn’t matter how tired I am, I can’t stop thinking! It just takes me forever to wind down. And when I don’t sleep I’m not a very nice mom or…human being.
When my oldest was a newborn and sleeping for 45 minute increments before waking for a half hour…all night….for months, I hit rock bottom because I rarely fell asleep again before he was awake AGAIN for the next feeding. That’s when I discovered a weird trick that really helped me fall asleep before I’d been in bed for 15 minutes: I bring my iPod and headphones to bed and listen to audiobooks. Because my brain is following a story it stops spinning, relaxes and bam! I’m dreaming.
So what do I listen to?
I’ll be honest. It’s mostly Harry Potter and Jane Austen audiobooks. But really anything I’m very familiar with will do. (If it’s a story I don’t know, I’ll be at the edge of my seat and won’t get sleepy!)
I love anything read by Jim Dale and I’ve found tons of great classics on Librivox (a free audiobook site with volunteer readers and everything in the public domain). If you haven’t heard of Librivox, get excited. It is such a great resource!
My favorite readers are Karen Savage and Elizabeth Klett. There, I just saved you hours of trying out various volunteer readers! Some of the readers aren’t as talented, bless their hearts, and some are downright unlistenable. But Savage and Klett read Austen, L.M. Montgomery, E. Nesbit, and many more. I’m currently listening to Jane Eyre. I also just love that it’s completely free. Hooray!
So that’s the BIG thing that helps me fall asleep at night or fall BACK asleep after one of the kids wakes me up (because let’s get real, it happens every night). But there’s just a few other things that have helped me, too:
- Using Magnesium Spray or Epsom Salt Baths (I also have read that magnesium deficiency is a possible cause of severe morning sickness so I’m trying to soak up as much as I can before we try to get pregnant again!)
- Spending time outside
- Staying off the caffeine in the afternoon
Anybody else have trouble sleeping? What sorts of things have helped you? Am I the only weirdo that listens to audiobooks to beat insomnia?
This post contains affiliate links.