“There is a time for many words, and there is also a time for sleep.” – Homer, The Odyssey
By Shawn McAndrew
As I talk with people lately, many complain about not being able to sleep, or getting too few hours of sleep at night. I am one of them. I lie awake at night thinking about what needs to be done, worrying about what might be, wondering if I’ll stay healthy. So many things to think about!
As we find out quickly in the Process, teachers emphasize how important it is to get 8 hours of sleep. They check in with us each morning and ask this very question – how many hours did we sleep last night? If we’re not getting enough sleep, we may not have the attention span or brain power to stay engaged during class. Afterall, we’re there to learn how to leave behind old patterns and learn new ways of being.
This is true for our life outside of the Process, too. Staying present, functioning well, and being centered and grounded are affected by how much sleep we get. There are hundreds if not thousands of sleep studies that show how our bodies and emotions are affected by how much rest we get – or lack thereof.
Tools for Sleep
These days, there are so many things that are adding to the stress and anxiety of life. We each have our own personal stressors, as well as community and world-wide stresses. As we experience more unknown or outside-the-norm problems, our body, intellect, and emotions suffer. There are some Hoffman tools that we can use, such as Quadrinity Check-In, Dark Side Stomp, guided visualizations, and more. There are also thousands of resources online to help get us centered and calm so that we can rest and rejuvenate.
UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center has created a body scan meditation that is a good relaxation technique. If you’re familiar with the EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) tapping method, check out this rest-inducing visualization. I googled sleep meditations and found many resources for both visualizations as well as music that streams for as long as you want to listen. Any of it is worth a try.
Release & Relax
Above all, mindfulness is the first step to getting a handle on what’s keeping us up at night. From there, we can take the steps needed to release and relax. I know it’s easier said than done, but letting go of the chatter is a priority in order to reduce that stress. Happy sleeping!