The journey has been long, but it’s not over.

So you’ve found your way to a medical blog about sleep, probably at 3 am right? You’ve probably tried everything at this point, every old wives remedy, every over the counter tincture, oil and pill and you’re still not sleeping well.  I know the journey has been tough for many reading this, but I want to tell you it’s not over yet.

A mentor of mine once said,

There is always hope until the point there is no hope anymore.

I can only think of one situation where there is no hope anymore. The good news is, if you’re still reading this there is still hope.

I’ve been considering for days where to start with this blog. What tips to give first. What advice can I give that will help most people quickly? I think this urge stems from a culture of immediate gratification, quick fixes, and clickbait articles. I had to take a step back before I knew where to start. My first and most vital piece of advice I want to give is: Acceptance.

Acceptance is the only way out of hell.

Marsha Linehan

We’re not condoning this suffering you face, but accepting that you have this difficulty and that you need to do something about it. The second part of acceptance is, accepting that sleep disorders are often not fixed overnight and that it will take some work. This brings me to something another of my mentors once pivotally stated:

No great achievement can be had without sacrifice.

Sacrifice does not have to be in the biblical sense (this blog does not advocate animal sacrifice in order to sleep better!). It can simply be implementing change: whether it’s weight loss, cutting down drinking or quitting nicotine or finally breaking the silence and speaking to someone about your anxiety, depression or OCD, or realizing that excessive sleeping tablet use has never really helped you or have only really helped in the ultrashort-term. It’s time to talk to someone.

Stay tuned for more information about sleep. We’ll take this journey together, it is not over yet.

Dr Schalk Wiehan Van Der Merwe

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