Insomnia, a Serious Adversary for Any Business Owner

Your thought patterns, beliefs and emotions can lead to insomnia. In fact, talk to any business owner and you will hear about racing thoughts, an overactive mind and constant worrying.

Symptoms of sleeping problems

At night time in the dark problems often appear insurmountable. In a matter of time you find yourself reworking issues or thinking of various solutions. Because we live in a very left brain orientated world we try to follow a logical problem solving approach. As a result our mind continuously tries to gather information. Then we weigh up the possible solutions before deciding on our course of action. This is often not the ideal way to solve problems as it can lead to over-thinking.

Soon you find yourself trapped in a loop, unable to switch off your overcharged mind. Hours later, you are still awake, despite the fact that you are mentally exhausted. You are suffering from insomnia.

Are you sleep deprived?

Ask yourself:

  • Do you struggle to fall asleep?
  • Do you mostly fall asleep in front of the TV?
  • Do you often fall asleep soon after supper only to wake up a few hours later?
  • Do you wake between 12.00 – 3.00 and struggle to fall asleep again?
  • Do you wake up feeling tired in the morning?
  • Do you need coffee to get you going in the morning?
  • Is it difficult to concentrate or focus on work, or be creative?
  • Are you irritable and short tempered due to a lack of sleep?

If you have answered Yes to two or more of these questions you most likely suffer from insomnia.

Impact of continued insomnia

It is easy to rationalise that you can catch up with sleep over a weekend or during a vacation.  The reality is that one can never catch up on lost sleep. Insomnia contributes significantly to adrenal burnout.

Worrying and negative thoughts impact on our body’s biochemistry. When we suffer from insomnia our body is unable to rest, repair and rejuvenate itself. With proper sleep we rebuild our physical reserves to start afresh the next day.

Insomnia however, leads to over-stimulation of our adrenal glands. Our adrenal glands can handle short bursts of over activity. However when they are continuously stimulated you enter a danger zone. It is like being chased by a lion in the veld. You stay on the alert, with your body in a highly energetic state.

Breaking the pattern of insomnia

There are various strategies you can follow to ensure a good night’s rest:

Better habits: Avoid doing work, interacting with social media, TV, playing computer games, surfing the internet, etc. after dinner. Instead listen to restful music or read a relaxing book. Ensure that you have no TV or cell phone in your bedroom as these stimulate brain activity. It is important to create a quiet atmosphere that is more conducive to restful sleep. Refrain from drinking caffeine at night, alcohol after dinner or using sugar. These lead to an over active brain.

Sleep with a notepad and pen next to your bed in case you wake up thinking about work. Jotting down the thought helps release it from your mind.

Brian falls asleep most nights reading his iPad. He falls asleep with the light on and still wearing his spectacles! Is it any surprise that he suffers from insomnia?

Cut down on racing thoughts: there are some very effective homeopathic remedies for insomnia. Consider these instead of conventional medicines, as homeopathic remedies are non-addictive. You may need some form of remedy to help you break the insomnia until you can sleep through naturally.

Do relaxation exercises while in bed. Tense and then relax various parts of your body working from your toes up to your head. Or focus on your breathing: just be aware of how you are breathing air in through your nose and breathing out through your mouth.

Body work: treat yourself to a back, neck or foot massage. Massage definitely helps to reduce stress by relieving tension and pain in the body.

Impact of insomnia

If you suffer from insomnia focus on addressing that first. Your immune system suffers if you try to push yourself harder. So make time to rest.

Lindsay went through a particularly trying time in his business a few months ago. At the time he had no energy. He went to work later in the mornings. In the evenings he was answering work emails. He would wake up after 2 hours sleep unable to fall asleep again.

He made definite changes: discontinued access to emails on his cell phone and took a remedy to help him sleep better. He also cut down on social activities over weekends, missed the early morning traffic and went to work later. He paced himself better.

Be kind to yourself.  Know it is possible to end insomnia.

Remember your mental, emotional, physical and spiritual well-being are core to running a successful business! Help yourself to function optimally.

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Posted in Business Owner, Well-being.