Please. Just. Sleep.

There are therapists who believe we should never share anything at all of ourselves with clients. Our struggles, failings, or the help we’ve needed. I’m not one of them. If that troubles you, look away now.

A facebook friend shared this week her tricky day, starting with her youngest child being awoken early by the May dawn. Her story awoke something in me; a battle that I fought for a number of years with two children that wouldn’t, or couldn’t, sleep.

And it was a battle, one that nearly broke me. I wasn’t getting enough sleep, and as a single Mum working from home (running men’s weight loss groups, which had to take place in the evening, when client’s were available), it was impacting more than my energy levels.

The more desperate I got for them to go to sleep and stay asleep, the more I begged; “Will you please just sleep?” “Please do what Mummy is asking.” “Please. Just. Sleep.” I realise now something that I couldn’t see at the time; the balance was all wrong. I was weakened with every plea, and we got further from what we all needed. The pleading and begging would then follow into day time, with me losing all sense of agency when it came to parenting. I was doing my best, and they weren’t bad kids, we were just in a mess.

If only what I had known then, what I learnt during my hypnotherapy training. We use a particular ‘voice’, lulling, calm but certain. Using ‘the voice’ with a child gets great results. Give this a go, in your best jackanory voice “and in a moment, you’ll go to sleep. It will be a long, long sleep, a lovely sleep. You’ll wake up feeling refreshed, feeling fantastic, ready for a lovely day. But first, you’re ready now for a long, long sleep. That’s right. Yes, that’s right. Good night.” Certain and calm.

I have a download that you might find helpful, which is available for free on my website. Enjoy the rest it brings. Jennifer