In my clinics, my patients often talk about their insomnia as a problem.
I prefer to see insomnia as a pattern…
A pattern is something that happens over time, and is built over time. And we can potentially break it and change it.
When we talk about a problem we assume something’s wrong with our bodies… If there is a fix it’s going to be a very reactive cure that will work over night or in minutes. Then, the problem will be gone.
Unfortunately, that’s not how insomnia works.
Insomnia is a pattern of behaviour that has evolved over time. It’s something consistent that happened maybe a few days or weeks in a row and your brain learnt the behaviour and turned it into a pattern.
Often the behaviours that can help us cope with insomnia are the same ones that can reinforce the pattern…
For example, spending more time resting in bed or going to bed early it’s essentially moving away from what used to be a very specific wake time and night time. This makes the brain confused…
It also doesn’t think that anything needs to change because you’ve altered everything to cope with the new pattern.
So, actually, seeing it as a pattern helps us understand how it happened and also what we can do to fix it.