Well kids, it’s 3 am and I’m awake for the third night in a row at this ungodly hour. I basically can’t be held accountable for anything I say or do from this point forward.
I will beat this thing eventually, because I always do, so I thought I’d share some of my Top-secret, patent pending jet lag cure advice for when you come visit us in Thailand.
- Recognize you are declaring all-out- war between yourself and all of nature by trying to completely flip your body’s internal clock. Sure you’ve taken short trips to the East Coast in which you had trouble falling asleep and then slept in a little later. What you are doing now makes all that look like child’s play. This is standing your bodies internal time clock on it head and shaking it up and down just for fun. I like to choose an alter-ego, usually an historic military leader or other strong and wily person out of mythology to be my inspiration in this battle. This time I’m Napoleon Bonaparte. I think this helps keep everything in perspective.
- Try to avoid magical thinking. The kind where you just lay in bed for a long time feeling one hundred percent wide awake and continue to hope that, eventually, without doing anything you will just magically fall back asleep. (All other types of magical thinking are okay though, like, for example, thinking you are Napoleon.)
- Plan ahead. I try to keep an iPad with some of my favorite relaxing music on my bed stand so that when I feel myself waking up I can at least lay quietly and listen to music. Often it helps to put me back to sleep but even if it doesn’t I can at least lay down quietly and try to avoid waking up Uncle Richard. I don’t know if you know this about him, but he really hates to be woken up. Go figure.
- Which brings me to my last tip also known as the nuclear option: wake up Uncle Richard. Waking up Uncle Richard is a tactic only for the most desperate of situations because in my case, well divorce, and for you and me both lots of wailing and gnashing of teeth. After the screaming though he usually settles down and can be relied on for a story or even a song to help one fall asleep. I’ve assigned him the jet-lag fighting pseudonym “Mike D.”