Get Out Of Bed And Keep Your Hands Busy If You Wake Up At Night

Waking up during the night is a common problem and a type of insomnia. Whether you’re a light sleeper or a bad dream wakes you, the video above from psychologist and Night School author Richard Wiseman offers two solutions.

The first is to simply write down any idea or thought that might have awoken you and get back to sleep. The second takes more work: You’ll have to get out of bed if you can’t fall back asleep within 15 minutes.

Go do something relaxing for 10 minutes — that doesn’t involve the TV or computer but occupies your body and brain (yes, I can’t wait for the comments). The idea is to stop associating bed with being awake and perhaps to tire yourself out a little so you can quickly go back to sleep.

Do you wake-up during the night? [YouTube]


  • This is one reason why I hope books never completely replace printed material. When I can’t sleep I find picking up a printed book or magazine and reading for 15 to 20 minutes usually does the trick. If it doesn’t I carry on reading anyway and get the benefit of an uninterrupted read.

    The trick is to find material that’s engaging, but not too stimulating. I avoid work related reading and heavyweight news stories. Fiction is good, light non fiction works too. I find the long form magazine stories are best of all.

  • If I wake up I try and go back to sleep. Turning a light on and reading a book, or doing something else for 15 – 20 minutes is just going to wake the rest of my family. In the middle of the night that’s a really bad idea.

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