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As a military spouse, there are many things we do alone during a deployment. We raise our kids alone, we celebrate milestones alone, and we learn to fall asleep alone. During my husband’s first deployment I struggled with sleep. I have a lot of anxiety and it was very hard to get to sleep.
Whether you have kids or not, bedtime is (or should be) a quiet time. You’re alone, your mind wanders, and then the worries start. It may be from the stress of the day, wondering if your husband is okay, or just worrying about being alone in the house at night with all the creaks and strange noises.
Don’t let this be you! There are plenty of things you can do to relax and help yourself fall asleep faster!
See Also: The Three “B’s” Bedtime Routine for Kids
Relax at Bedtime & Get to Sleep Easily
1. Take a warm shower or bath
I don’t know about you, but I love a hot shower! I hop in the shower sometimes when I am upset or just need to think or pray and I just let the water wash over me while I think, pray, or cry.
The warm water is good for your body and helps you to wind down and relax. I suggest 10 minutes at the very least before bed.
2. Write your spouse a letter or write in a Journal
If you’re worried about your spouse write them a letter or email with what you’re thinking or even just about your day or how much you love them.
You can also write out your thoughts in a journal if you don’t want to worry your spouse about your fears or if you just need to get your thoughts out on paper. Need a few ideas to get you started? Check these out!
3. Read a book or read the Bible.
I don’t know about you, but I always can get lost in a good book, especially a good fiction book! A book has the power to wrap your mind into a story so as to take your mind off of your troubles and to make you feel just for a few minutes like you are a part of the story.
I know for me, even reading a few minutes of a story helps get my mind off something I am worried about. It helps me relax more and gives me something to think about before I drift off to sleep.
You can also read a passage of Scripture. I usually choose to read Psalms or Proverbs because the verses in those books are very encouraging and help me to feel better. Look up verses on fear or peace. I guarantee after a few minutes of reading and studying you will feel better about going to sleep alone!
4. Listen to music or soothing sounds until you fall asleep
Listening to music before bed can be very calming and relaxing. The type of music you choose is up to you, whether you prefer instrumental, meditative, or hymns and worship. You can also listen to soothing sounds such as falling rain or ocean waves.
One program I’ve found easy to use is the Sleep Easily Sleep Kit. This program is designed to help resolve insomnia in the 1-in-3 people who struggle with it.
The best thing about this program is that it’s medication-free! It uses a form of cognitive-behavioral therapy to help with physical triggers and to get you to sleep.
The Kit retails for $89 and includes the following:
- Two Recordings (each available in a male and female voice):
- Sleep One – guides you to sleep within minutes
- Sleep Two – helps you sleep more deeply and stay asleep
- Three Supplemental Recordings:
- Feeling Better During the Day — how to reduce stress during the day
- Ocean Sounds
- The Sound of Rest—relaxation music composed exclusively for Sleep Easily
- Contoured Sleep Mask
- Premium Silicone Earplugs
- SleepGuide Book
This product was created by Dr. Richard Shane, a behavioral sleep specialist, for police, firefighters, military members, commercial airline pilots, and the public. I believe this would be a great gift for military members or spouses with PTSD who struggle to sleep.
Want to learn more? Check out their website: sleepeasily.com.
5. Practice meditation, yoga, or deep breathing.
Yoga is great right before bed. It helps you stretch, teaches you to focus on the breath, and relaxes you. Yoga also teaches you deep breathing techniques and how to use your breath to relax your body.
Meditation is another great way to relax and get to sleep. I have found many Meditation “Minis” on Spotify that is great for helping me slow down those racing thoughts and get me to sleep.
6. Pray to sleep
If you are unable to sleep then prayer just might work for you! Praying when I’m afraid or can’t sleep helps me find peace. You can also think about the things you are thankful for, from anything to the sheets you’re laying on to the new promotion you got at work.
7. Make a plan
During deployment, it helped me to know I had a plan in case of an emergency. Whether it’s a plan on what you would do if there was a fire, or if someone broke into your house, having a plan can help you feel better at night. Find what works for you and what makes you feel safe.
8. Don’t force yourself to sleep
If there was anything I learned about trying to sleep during deployment it was to not rush or force myself. If you can’t sleep, get up and try any of the suggestions above or go cross off some of those items on your to-do list until you get sleepy!
What about YOU? Do you have a hard time sleeping during deployment? What do you do that helps you get better sleep?
I received a Sleep Easily Kit to review. All opinions expressed in this article are my own, honest, thoughts.