What are the Causes of Insomnia?

man lies on bed holding clock having insomnia problem
by Beatrix Schmidt

If you are struggling with insomnia right now, then I’m sure you would love to know what causes it, as understanding your triggers allows you to make the right changes to get your sleep back.

But of course, when you are already tired from a lack of sleep, going into detective mode can feel like a lot of work. I’d love to make that easier for you by sharing the 7 different areas of life that affect your sleep.

Looking at your problems from these 7 different angles can really shed light on the underlying problems that we might otherwise miss, as they are not always that obvious.

In this video, I explain where your insomnia triggers could be coming from. If you didn’t know what yours was before, hearing me explain it might give you that ‘a-ha’ moment of realisation.

You may also find that one kind of trigger leads to another kind of trigger, so this video will help you to see the connection.

Intellectual triggers can be thoughts and feelings that underlie the emotional triggers, leading to disturbed sleep.

A few of the areas of life that affect sleep tend to come up frequently with my clients who are aiming for peak performance in their careers, while also juggling life’s other responsibilities.

Emotional triggers

It’s obvious that negative emotions could be what are keeping you awake at night. But clients of mine are often surprised when I explain that positive emotions can have the same effect.

Think of a time when you had a success at work, or maybe won an award or competition. All that excitement and the associated thoughts buzzing around in your brain may have kept you up that night.

I’m not suggesting that we don’t want to experience positive emotions – far from it! The key here is giving yourself time to process your feelings before you start your bedtime routine. Give yourself the time to think and then calm a little earlier in the day.

Intellectual triggers

These are often thoughts and feelings that underlie the emotional triggers I mentioned above.

If you are especially focused on your career and going through a busy time, then beware of becoming too mentally tired each day. This type of tiredness damages our productivity over time, leaving us going to be anxious about work. So you can easily see how this becomes a negative emotional trigger, keeping us awake and creating a vicious circle of tiredness.

If this sounds like you, then it’s important to find out what those intellectual triggers and worries are, and address them.

Environmental triggers

In the last video I shared, I talked about the bedroom environment (find it here if you missed it).

But this extends to your home and even your workspace. I often ask clients to consider their whole 24 hours, not just the time they are in bed. You already know that too much light in your bedroom will make it harder for you to sleep at night.

But it’s also worth considering if you have enough light in your environment during the day, which regulates your body clock, making a clear distinction between day and night.

To learn more about insomnia see: The 10 Day Sleep Challenge

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