I have a friend who was waking up in the middle of the night with anxious thoughts. This was causing them to get less than ideal sleep. We wanted to find the root cause of the thoughts, so this person could sleep better throughout the night. Here is an example of the thoughts they were having:
“Thinking about things I have to do tomorrow”
“I have to start eating healthy again”
“You can do it. You can eat better”
“I can’t believe how busy I am the next few weeks”
“Do I even like being busy?”
“Now I’m thinking when I have nothing to do it may be better”
All these thoughts coincided with a heavy feeling in my friend’s chest.
This person described that they had to “push through” their decisions. That making a decision is like a weight and that they can’t do it comfortably.
Based on this information, I thought this was a past event being relived in the person’s mind unconsciously, so we tried the past events technique.
“Can you think of a time where you felt heavy in your chest, you had to “push through a decision”, you couldn’t do it comfortably, and it was a big weight”.
My friend had an event surface that perfectly matched this description. We then integrated this thought by having this person reflect on all the thoughts they were having at night and how they were matching up perfectly with the struggle they had with this decision from the past.
After this person realized this, they felt much better. This happened today, so we will see if they start sleeping through the night. I would imagine they will :).