Something that I have been doing for many years is summarizing my day as I fall asleep. Most days are defined by something good that took place – a call from my daughter or son, a milestone in my book, a writing job successfully completed, etc. Out of fairness, I also think about those situations that did not go as well as planned or hoped.
A trusted friend and former colleague disclosed to me a number of years ago that he asks his children to come up with three things for which they are grateful as they go to sleep each night. While this is clearly a great idea for kids, it might also be good advice for the rest of us.
If you are anything like me, you have occasional problems falling asleep. But this strategy of thinking of three good things rather than rehashing the events that went wrong sounds like an excellent solution. It may be bigger than that – a lesson for life.
We have all known those people who greet us with a litany of situations that have been unfortunate or unpleasant in their lives. The husband or wife is a loser, the kids belong in family services, there isn’t enough money to pay bills, etc. Yes, I am always sympathetic to these people but I always want to say (and sometimes do say), what’s positive in your life?
Sometimes this helps and person says something about a good outcome or situation. Or it may be an inspiring person, serendipitous event, or a surprising windfall. Whatever it is, I am certain that too many of us spend too much time describing everything that is undesirable in our lives rather than thinking about the positive or those realities for which we are grateful.
It really does work in terms of insomnia. I refer to it as clearing my brain of everything undesirable and closing the day with wins of any type. Check it out. It really does make all of life much more worth living. Shalom.