I found through trial and error that I could distract my mind during long sleepless stretches with different kinds of positive aspirations, it worked OK for a few weeks at least. Then my mind caught on, and I have since learned that affirmations work a whole lot better when your mind doesn’t start adding a classic gameshow BZZZZTTT after each one.
“Gotta get back to sleep, just beating myself up is not really helping anyoneBZZZZZT. Oh yeah, affirmations; uh, you’re a good person and feeling this much stress doesn’t help anythingBZZZZT and you don’t deserveBZZZZT to feel this way all the time. BZZT.”
“Okayyy… maybe that one word thing. Uh, peaceBZZZT. GratitudebzzzZZZZT. HappyBZZZT. CalmBBBBBBBBZZZZZZZT.”
“Damn. OK, how about that appreciation one. I am grateful for all that I have. BZZZZZZT. Uh, I am grateful for the roofBZZZZT over my head and having enough fooodBZZZT to eat andBZZZZT well shit.”
“Huh, maybe aim lower. OK, you, uh TRY to be a good personBBBZZZT at least some of the timeBZZZZZZT and maybe you could try to lighten up just a littleBZZZZZZZZZZT.”
“OK. You’re not the worst personBBZZZZZZTT who ever livedBZZZZT BZZZT BZZZZZT and you shouldn’t always stressBZZYT because things are going to get betterBZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZT and things can improveBZZZZZT in the blink of an eyeBZZZZZZZZT because the universe (pause) is filled with unlimited possibilitybzzzzzzZZZZZZZZZZZZZTTTTTTT.”
“It’s like that, huh. I guess I’ll just sit here half awake and stress out then…” (silence) “…and hopefully get some sleep laterBZZZZZZZZZZT.”