Here’s Elise’s story:

“I’m always worrying about the future and my mind is always preoccupied.” 

When asked whether she fell asleep easily at night and woke up feeling rested, with a slight frown she laughed and said: 

“Oh no, never! I can’t remember the last time I had a good sleep. I wake up constantly and can’t fall back to sleep. I worry about the future and what might go wrong. I would like to be able to sleep well again.”

Elise was stuck in a Red Light Reflex, her ribs tightly drawn down into the center and her chest collapsed, and her neck and head forward. This had happened over time due to emotional and psychological stresses. 

She had a sensitive disposition and had been raised in a very critical family. Over time she had lost her confidence and sense of self. 

She learned how to begin to release the muscles of breathing by pandiculating the front, back, and sides of her ribs. The next day she shared that she’d had the best sleep that she had in recent memory. 

She’d woken up only once but was able to fall right back to sleep with ease. She hadn’t woken up worrying and that was a huge step forward! Elise now has a daily Somatic Movement practice and continues to sleep well. She has hope for her future that she created for herself. Her biggest takeaway was that while she experienced her stress as physical (her inability to sleep deeply) it was her psychological outlook of fear and her negative self-talk that was deeply rooted in the past that contributed to her sleep issues. Releasing her full body physical holding enabled her to shift her mental attitude. 

Remember – the brain makes no distinction between mental, emotional, or physical tension. It’s all somatic!

If Elise’s story sounds familiar, know that you are not alone. So many of us are carrying our stress of the day into our sleep and as such we cannot get the good quality rest that we need.