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Any relaxation/switching off techniques (not mindfulness)

(14 Posts)
MrsBertMacklin Wed 09-Nov-16 13:31:28

I'm having a high stress period at work (an end is in sight post Christmas) which is exacerbating my anxiety at night and even when exhausted, I'm waking up at 4am with 'the fear', i.e. Not sleeping as deeply as I should due to not switching off properly.

Due to aforementioned work pressures, I have 90 minutes between getting home from work and going to bed, to eat and relax.

Mindfulness makes my anxiety worse, I really need to stop the whirring and replaying of the days events, before getting to bed. I will start writing things down, but would like to try anything else that's worked for others, please?

Itisnoteasybeingdifferent Wed 09-Nov-16 17:39:06

Avoid gin... and/or wine

Actually avoid getting drunk in any shape at all... It disturbs your sleep and you wake up half way through the night and can't get back to sleep after... Well that's what happens to me..sadsad

MikeUniformMike Wed 09-Nov-16 17:40:44

I do Sudoku and word puzzles. It works for me.

fitzbilly Wed 09-Nov-16 17:42:13

Running. It's the only thing that really had a big impact on my work related stress.

Apanicaday Wed 09-Nov-16 17:45:29

Crochet or colouring whilst listening to audiobooks - the combination of busy hands and having to listen to something seems to help to block out and calm down the anxious thoughts for me (and I'm with you on mindfulness - it just gives the anxiety space)

stationtostation Wed 09-Nov-16 17:50:30

I like Andrew Johnson relaxation sleep app, but it may be tiny bit like mindfulness (not sure)
It starts off with breathing or stretching relaxation (you can choose) I prefer the stretching one. Really helps me drop off.
If I'm going through a bad time and waking anxious during the night I just play it again to help drop off and stop myself ruminating.

dangermouseisace Wed 09-Nov-16 19:37:20

I second running. Preferably fast if you've had a bad day as then all you can think about is putting one foot in front of the other. If you already run then I'd recommend intervals- 4 min fast, 1 mins slow for 30 mins or so as you literally cannot think (apart from uuuuurrrrrgh when is it going to stop) and then you've got endorphins flowing afterwards. I find that knackering myself completely is the most effective form of relaxation.

Yoga is also good but you need to go to a class to learn that- preferably a yoga that moves with the breath e.g. ashtanga or vinyasa flow.

HandbagCrab Wed 09-Nov-16 19:46:09

Paying attention to my breathing used to make me really anxious but I'm having a bit of luck with a pregnancy mindfulness thing off YouTube - my heart rate dropped 15bpm the first time I did it. I fell asleep to it last night! I've found hypnotherapy cds have sent me to sleep too.

Writing stuff down that is worrying me helps me too. You could try some cbt exercises for anxiety that may help.

Hot baths, no caffeine after 12pm, pilates, swimming, facials, massages, cross stitch are things I try to do regularly that help with my anxiety. Best of luck, it feels like a never ending battle sometimes smile

AndShesGone Wed 09-Nov-16 19:51:57

Comedy shows.

Ebbenmeowgi Wed 09-Nov-16 20:04:35

Keep a notepad by your bed so when you wake up with the fear just write the fears down in bullet points. Worked wonders for me when I went thru stress related insomnia so hopefully should work. Also agree with others suggestions about exercise and yoga - esp yoga where you get to do a deep relaxation at the end. Don't watch tv or look at phone/computer before bed, have a bath or something and try to totally wind down. Hypnotherapy/relaxation cds might be useful too. Stress is the worst - hope it doesn't last too long for you x

user1475253854 Wed 09-Nov-16 20:10:33

Do you experience ASMR? YouTube it. It's basically where someone talking or making noises (rustling things or tapping) causes people to feel tingly on their scalp and sometimes the rest of their body. A lot of people find ASMR videos relaxing. Though if you don't experience it you will probably think I'm mental!

Kai1977 Wed 09-Nov-16 20:13:43

Exercise and then later counted breathing. Inhale for 4, hold for three, out for 7. Rhe counting is probably the distraction bit but the breathing also calms the body down.

LifeBeginsNow Wed 09-Nov-16 20:17:40

My (weird) relaxation thing is as a result of mumsnet. They've got a section called sporner corner and the videos (via YouTube) are deeply therapeutic. There's a lady called Dr Pimple Popper and I find her extraction facials very relaxing. I don't have the sound on and just watch. I rarely stay awake for longer than 5 minutes.

Might not be everyone's cup of tea but it works for me!

MrsBertMacklin Wed 09-Nov-16 20:37:38

Thanks everyone, I really appreciate the responses. Can't see my way out of a situation sometimes! I think exercising is the key and what's dropped away with working late, but I'll try the writing thing and I'd forgotten about Andrew Johnson.

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