Through living in multiple homes I eventually had to learn how to conquer my fear of sleeping in a house alone at night.
After many many nights of feeling alone, scared and sometimes just down right creeped out I’ve managed to conquer my fear and have a consistent night’s sleep without interruption.
To sleep in a house alone, make sure everything is locked for peace of mind, and stop things that could make noise when trying to sleep. Distract yourself using different methods of entertainment (some better than others, see below) and get into the right mentality to sleep by following a late night routine.
Why we are afraid to sleep in a house alone?
When it came to sleeping alone for me, it was the constant thought of someone or something being in the home with me as I slept
This is a natural feeling for most people, as you’re most vulnerable when you sleep. So many people find it so hard to be alone without the distraction of others through communication or other means.
Make yourself feel safe.
A great way to help yourself feel more protect is to go through what’s protecting you. By allowing yourself time to acknowledge all of things protecting you, your brain can start to ease off on the tension a little.
Double check everything is secure.
This is a simple solution, but it can work wonders for giving you peace of mind. When I was alone for a night, I would give myself a mental “to do list”. I would go around all of the doors / windows before I went to bed, and made sure that each and every one was closed and locked. Doing this before you climb under the cover is a great habit, especially because it stops the ‘is the door locked’ anxious thoughts.
Doing all of these little routines before bed is a must. Because often, wondering ‘if’ the door is locked isn’t enough to make you get up and sort it, but is enough to keep you awake!
More locks, less problems
Why reassure yourself when you can know for definite that you’re safe? If you’re worried about someone coming into your home. Then installing locks in your home can really be a worry-killer.
Installing a lock on bedroom doors that lead to your bedroom means you feel safer thanks to the smaller space. There’s a lot fewer places that you could have ‘forgotten’ to lock if your bedroom itself is also secure.
The things that go bump in the night.
Oh those bumps can be annoying, everyone has those random objects in their homes that just love to make noise when you’re asleep! These can either in or out of your home. Boilers / noisy taps or even just a dog outside, all these things can really change your mentality when trying to sleep on your own.
Although there’s not too much we can do to solve noises like noisy floor boards or a house that typically creaks at night, there may be some things we can do to prevent other noises.
Taps and showers can be a nightmare. Normally you wouldn’t notice those noises when up, but when you’re trying to get some sleep it can be a real issue hearing the droplets of a leaky water outlet
A solution for this is to add to the “to do list” we spoke of earlier and make sure any water outlet in your home is nice and secure. If it’s an issue with the water outlet leaking then you’ll need to get a plumber or speak to your landlord to get this solved. (Unless you want to take a shot at it yourself)
Boilers love to make noises randomly and can really be one of the worst things to suddenly jolt you out of your sleepy state. A simple one for this (if you can) is to turn off your boiler before going to sleep. If this isn’t possible, then check keep on reading for solutions to noises you can’t control.
These are just some examples, but there is a huge list of things that go bump in the night and here’s how to solve them.
Oh people, how they love to make noise when you’re busy. If you live in the city, you’ll probably hear people shouting / talking and all sorts of stuff throughout the night. One of the most simple ways to solve this is to simply close your windows and make sure that the place you sleep isn’t directly next to a busy street. If it is then consider switching around your bedroom with another room that’s further away.
Animals also love to make noises, in experience dogs, my neighbours dog loves to bark at things in the middle of the night, not only does this interrupt what I was doing, but it also sets alarm bells ringing in the back of my mind that something is going to happen such as someone being in my garden.
If all else fails.
If all else fails and you are truly worried about the things that go bump in the night, then investing in masks and ear plugs is probably your best bet. Not only this the cheapest solution, it’s also a full-proof one.
If you’re looking for advice for the best masks/earplugs, check out the guides on this site. As someone who writes about sleeping a lot, I share my top recommendations for the best gear to help you sleep.
How to stop yourself to worrying about sleeping alone? Simple! Distract yourself. Taking your thoughts off what could happen is the best method to sleep in a house alone. But it’s getting to this stage can be the real issue.
An effective way of doing this is to get yourself to look forward to an activity before going to sleep. Got a great movie you want to watch? Stick that on before bed time and let your worries fade away. Or perhaps you may have a really interesting book you could get lost in? Then turn on your lamp and get reading. Doing so will not only distract yourself from the thoughts going on in your head, but also entertain and satisfy you so that you are relaxed afterward.
One important tip is that if you’re stuck awake with your thoughts at night, the best thing you can do is actually get up and do something else. Lying in bed after a set amount of time won’t make you feel sleepy – what will is getting up, trying to read a book and feeling how tired you are.
Other methods of distracting yourself include:
- Relaxing music
If you find that you’re just a social person and you’re so used to talking to people just before bed, then you may find that distracting yourself may not be enough. Calling a loved one / friend or even a family member can be a great way to get yourself nice and relaxed. If you’re a bit scared then don’t bring this up with them as it may amplify those thoughts, but at the same time maybe a reassuring voice would help. It’s up to you.
Either way, make sure to have a normal conversation with them and cover things other than the negatives you’re feeling. Doing so will bring your thoughts back into normality and keep you level headed for sleeping.
Having the right mentality.
Having the right mentality for to sleep alone is key. Ensuring you are relaxed but also positive whilst doing so.
Keeping your mind staying positive and avoiding worrying about what could happen is hard. But make sure to reassure yourself. Our subconscious is a clever thing and can sometimes overrule our conscious mind, repeat to yourself “I am safe” if you get worried.
Getting into the right mentality to go to sleep is not always achievable through will power alone. For me, I always had to go through my “late night rituals” before I could really hit the hay. These would include getting myself into “sleep mode”. Each evening I would take a shower, brew a cup of relaxing chamomile tea, get myself into pajamas. After doing this routine for so long, my brain & body would know when it was time to sleep, and as soon as I hit the bed sheets, I didn’t have time to worry as I was already asleep!