What are the things that make or break your rest period? What do you do or have to do in order to fall asleep? What little things guarantee that you won’t get your rest? For me, it’s pretty straightforward.
To fall asleep:[ul][li]Nothing helps more than having a woman by my side[/li][li]It’s gotta be dark unless I’m totally exhausted[/li][li]It takes two pillows for me, and sometimes three[/li][li]I have to lie on my side, being prone or supine doesn’t work[/li][li]Even if it’s hot I usually require at least a sheet covering me[/li][li]If my feet are cold it makes it difficult to drift off[/li][li]I must have my mouth open to breathe[/li][li]When it is really hard to fall asleep I put a pillow over my head[/ul][/li]What keeps me awake:[ul][li]A ticking clock (hooray for digital clocks!)[/li][li]A dripping faucet or running toilet[/li][li]A moronic neighbor’s dog barking endlessly[/li][li]Someone snoring (including myself)[/li][li]Having a fold of the blankets under my body[/li][li]If the back of my neck and shoulders are uncovered[/li][li]Developing dry mouth in the middle of the night[/li][li]Re-acclimating to not having a girlfriend in bed with me[/li][li]Having my toes draped over the end of the bed[/ul][/li]
The oddball factors:[ul][li]I have learned to never have an arm extended over the edge of the bed. Doing so hyper-extends the limb after an hour and makes for a very sore body. This can also happen if your limb is placed on a pile of the covers.[/li]
[li]If I manage to drool on my pillow while I sleep, the cold spot will actually wake me up until I turn it over.[/li]
[li]My latest discovery is to keep a sport bottle on the floor next to the bed for when I am thirsty. If it gets tipped over by the mutt it will not spill.[/li]
[li]Turning on any sort of light totally destroys my ability to return to sleep. The same goes for having to engage in any complicated activity like getting up for a drink of water. (see above)[/li]
[li]Recently, I have also noticed that if I open only one eye to look at the clock it is much easier to get back to sleep. I suppose that reduced stimulation to the brain assists in a quicker return to slumber.[/li]
[li]If needed, I will put a pillow over my head in order to muffle the outside world. I have to leave an air gap to breathe, but sometimes this is the only thing that allows me to drift off.[/li]
[li]When I know that rest is essential and I am having trouble drifting off, I will artificially induce sleep by simulating all of the requisite modes of posture and respiration. Blanking the mind, deep breathing and releasing tension in my limbs all help to engage the sleep cycle.[/ul][/li]So, what does it for you? What idiosyncrasies do you have about sleeping and what will help or ruin your night’s rest more than anything else?