From feeling like a zombie to feeling well rested - Mark's Story

sleep stories

READ: From feeling like a zombie to feeling well rested

Mark’s sleep problem in brief:
+ 15 years of sleep problems
+ 3 - 4 hours sleep per night
+ Overthinking during the night
+ Felt his sleep problems were hopeless

Mark had struggled with his sleep for around 15 years and was getting through life feeling exhausted and frustrated. He talked about knowing he was grumpy and impatient with his family which was a big motivation for him to work on improving his sleep. He found that he worried about everything during the night but didn’t see how this could change as it had always been this way. He usually only got 3-4 hours sleep at the beginning of the night and then lay awake feeling fidgety until morning.



Q: Describe how things were for you before working with Emma  ( much sleep you were getting, what was concerning you, how you were feeling  etc). 

I have slept badly for a very long time now, averaging maybe 3 or 4 hours a night, with a  very rare "decent" sleep of 6 or 7 hours thrown in.

I had just accepted it and plodded on  through work and life. I could generally fall asleep quite fast but always woke up a two or  three hours later, and that was me awake until sunrise (when I could magically fall back  asleep just before the alarm went off).

The main issue keeping me awake was over thinking - work, kids, money etc. - whatever the flavour of the day was. Being constantly tired was the norm for me, but of course this had an effect on how I was around and  towards my wife and kids... Often snappy and impatient. Which I knew wasn't right and fair,  so I had to do something about it.

Q: Describe how things are for you now. What has changed? 

Working with Emma has worked wonders for me. I now sleep well and have gone through  nights without waking up at all. A miracle for me really. And when I do wake up, the  techniques I was taught to get back to sleep and stop thinking about things I cannot  control, and should not be thinking about at night, have really helped. Every now and then  I have a bad night and old habits creep back in, but that's when I up my game with the  techniques the next night. I am certainly less moody and snappy around the house, and  feel pleased that I am more patient, probably nicer and more fun with the family - my main  reason for doing it.

Q: If you could go back and give yourself a piece of advice or support when you were  struggling, what would it be? 

I wish I started the sleep therapy years ago... I feel so much better for it and realise now  how much I just "zombied" my way through the days.





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Q: Is there anything you feel could have been improved to give you a better experience?

Having the sessions over Zoom worked well, but I should have taken myself away upstairs  and away from distracting dog's walking about or knock on the doors, which happened  from time to time.



Q: Are there any other comments you would like to make (eg how you found the programme  experience as a whole)? 

No other comments but another big thank you.



A Note From Emma:

Mark was stuck in a cycle of waking after just a few hours and experiencing a busy mind  which kept him awake for hours during the night. Although he didn’t feel ‘stressed’, his  mind was in a habit of overthinking which left him exhausted and irritable. He needed to  retrain his body and mind to associate differently to night time and once he began this his  sleep quickly improved. Mark is a really good example of why it is so powerful to make the 

decision to work on your sleep - even if you are ‘getting by’ on little sleep, life can feel so  much better on the other side of this change.



No more desperately googling sleep remedies or guessing what to do to fix your sleep