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It confused me because there appeared to be no tangible cause, nothing had happened which was upsetting or desperate, yet it felt like some kind of tragedy had occurred and I just couldn't remember it.I had no excuse for the new tearfulness and kept wondering why I couldn't snap out of it.Now, I feel about meditation rather like I suspect Homer Simpson feels about kale, but I desperately needed my sleep back so I am willing to give it a go.She hands me a pile of forms to document how I feel about certain situations in my day.I would have felt guilty about asking for this before, but now I find it gives every evening a positive start.
Weekends with the children became relentless as I found I couldn't keep all their various arrangements in my head as usual. I even invested in a full body medical Mo T with a private GP, wondering in the back of my mind if my imminent 50th birthday meant this was all a potential symptom of the menopause. Other women's stories I heard reflected the full spectrum of anxiety from the creeping sadness through panic attacks in public to severe depression requiring medication. There is no history of depression or anxiety in my family, so the only possible logical cause seemed to be mild mental exhaustion, maybe the strain of years of responsibility combined with the wounding realisation I was at least half way through my life.
It's a glamorous and fast-paced life (and one which has taken me all over the world and thrown me together with everyone from political power players to top designers and Hollywood A-listers) but I'm clearly not working on the frontline of a war zone or saving lives in A&E. Out of the blue in the bleak early hours of one morning, I suddenly felt overwhelmed with a 'what's the point? In the bleak early hours of one morning, it felt as much physical as emotional.
When I did manage a few minutes' sleep I was grinding my teeth so badly the dentist suggested a gum shield.
Cathy also advises drinking two litres of water a day (apparently it's a neurological godsend, helping your brain to function healthily), not eating lunch at my desk and taking a ten-minute phone-free head- clearing walk at least once a day.
She orders me to download a meditative app called Sleepstream to help relax.Sometimes my jacket is still on an hour after I get in.