Goodnight, sleep well. It’s a common parting phrase. When we leave the campsite potluck, or the card game at our neighbor’s rig, we say, “goodnight, sleep well.” If you are one of the many who suffer from insomnia, this is not a welcome phrase. Insomnia is a common problem, and often increases with the years. You’d think a motorhoming life would be free of worries and problems that cause sleep difficulties, but it may not be true for you.

Do you have trouble falling asleep, lying there listening to the vague hum of your neighbor’s TV, or the crickets in the fields? Or do you get to sleep easily, only to wake up in the dark dead of night, and not be able to find restful sleep again until the early morning hours. If you have bought a new mattress, or at least tried higher thread count sheets and still not found relief, I have a prescription that is one of the best, most effective ways to encourage sleep without harmful side effects. Best of all, it’s free. This technique is based on pranyama, an ancient Indian practice of breathing. You may think breathing is totally unconscious, but the fact is it can be controlled, and used to influence heart rate, blood pressure, circulation, hormone production, stress levels and other bodily functions.

So how does the breathing pattern go? Glad you asked.

Lying comfortably, after you have been to the bathroom, smoothed out the sheets and turned out all the lights, close your eyes and relax your body.

Inhale through your nose as you count to 6.

Hold for a count of 3.

Exhale through your nose as you count to 6.

Hold for 3.

Repeat this series- inhale 6 and exhale 6, hold 3, four more times.

Use this exercise whenever you have trouble sleeping. It quiets the body and stills the racing mind. Breathing, with this pattern or one that you may have created on your own helps you to focus on your own relaxation, and brings you to the present moment. There is no way you can think about the mistakes of yesterday or the worries of tomorrow while you are concentrating on the next breath. This slows down the entire metabolism and allows you to slip into a deep restful sleep. As long as a neighbor doesn’t turn on his generator at two in the morning you will sleep like a baby.  Goodnight, sleep well

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