Sickle cell disease: Scheduling worrying time

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Thinking about your worries at bedtime can make you more anxious and make it harder to sleep. Find tips for reflecting on your worries during the day instead of when you are trying to sleep.

Key points

  • If you know that you will be worrying anyway, try to get your worries out long before bedtime so that they do not affect your sleep.
  • Choose a time of day to think about your worries, say them out loud or write them in a journal for about 10 minutes.
  • Pay full attention to your worries during this time and do not fight or judge them.
  • If you start to worry about something at night, try writing it down in a journal and reminding yourself that you will deal with it during your scheduled "worrying time" the next day.

You may find it hard to “turn your mind off” while you are trying to go to sleep. In fact, you might find that the more you think about your worries, the more anxious you become and the harder it is to sleep.

Consider setting aside a block of “worrying time” to think about your worries and get them out of the way long before your bedtime. If you know you are going to worry anyway, you might as well do it earlier in the day, not when you are trying to go to sleep.

Tips for reflecting on your worries during the day

  • Choose a time of day to sit down in a quiet, private place and think about your worries for about 10 minutes.
  • You could worry silently to yourself or say your worries out loud, whichever you prefer. You could also write down your thoughts in a journal. During this time, pay full attention to your worries and don’t fight them or judge them.
  • Once you are done with your “worrying time,” let go, take a few deep breaths and relax.
  • If you find that your worries pop up while you are trying to fall asleep, remind yourself that you already did your “worrying time.”
  • Consider keeping a journal by your bed so that if you start to worry about something at night, you can write down the topic and remind yourself that you will deal with it the next day during your scheduled “worrying time.”
Last updated: January 4th 2024