Insomnia Is My Nemesis

Image courtesy of debspoons /

All is quiet in the house. It’s been such a hectic day.

And I feel exhausted. Absolutely shattered. But still I can’t sleep. Insomnia.

It’s one of those dreaded nights where my thoughts spring into life and I can’t stop them.

My mind races. I sometimes don’t even know what I’m thinking. It’s just my mind going into overdrive.

It’s not even about anything in particular. It could be things I’ve done, things I want to do, things I think I should do.

There it goes, wandering along and no matter how hard I try I just can’t seem to sleep. I get up and sit for a while, thinking it might help.

I’m not even sure if it’s insomnia because it doesn’t happen very often but when it does I just can’t get to sleep.

Right now, it’s not quite midnight but it still feels like 3 in the morning. I’ve not had a sleepless night in a long time but recently I’ve had 2 in the past couple of weeks.

So, I’m sitting in the dark, typing onto a black screen and it feels quite surreal.

I wouldn’t care so much if this were always a productive time for me when my most brilliant ideas can come to light. But I’m mostly just thinking about general stuff.

Still, at least for tonight I’m being a bit productive.

Not only am I writing this post, but it’s also enabled me to go through my RSS reader and think about what I actually want to read and comment on going forward.

I’m finding lifeless posts about SEO, branding and marketing more and more dull recently and I have extensively culled the blogs in my RSS reader tonight.

But at least there’s some golden tickets in there. Willy Wonka had the right idea when it came to marketing after all.

Create great products that no-one else is making and stand out from the crowd by being different.

The trouble is I’m finding less and less golden tickets. It means I can’t spend as much time on the one’s I’ve already found while I’m searching for new ones.

I love the community spirit in blogging though so I’m always going to try and visit and comment on as many blogs as I can.

But I need to give more love to those that I enjoy and less to the ones that I don’t or that I just don’t understand or relate to.

I think my insomnia may have helped rather than hinder me tonight at least.

Now I really need to focus more when I get the chance as my day can be very disjointed.

Looking after my daughter often leaves me with little or no time to prepare anything.

I need to be super efficient going forward and plan everything as much as I possibly can.

Do you ever suffer from insomnia?

Does it help or hinder your thought processes?

Time for bed.

Opt In Image
Did You Enjoy This Post?
Then don't leave without subscribing to my blog

Subscribe for future posts and get them sent directly to your inbox - it's totally free...

Enter your name and best email address below and hit the yellow button!


  1. Annie André says

    I think you and I must be on some similar plane in this world because every time i visit i feel as though you’ve entered my mind and read my personal thoughts.

    I also feel like there are less and less nuggets out there to find. I truly believe we have reached a saturation point where we just can’t soak in anymore information anymore because it’s just re-hashed stuff we already know. Kind of like problogger now. All the posts are 30 best this and 25 that and 15 of these. Like you i’m just going to my favorite places to read. My favorite ones are the ones where the personality shines though where it’s not just a robotic voice typing on the other end but it feels like i’m talking to someone. It’s one of the reasons why i love stopping by your place.

    I do have insomnia and my most productive times are after 10 pm when all the lights are out and I don’t have hungry kids, or chatty husband. I do sleep in a bit though because I tend to work late at night.. But I like it…..

    • Annie André says

      p.s. I see you got hybrid connect.. That is awesome. I’m loving it especially the design features on the backend. I think this one is a keeper. Now crossing my fingers that it works with Amazon CDN..

      • says

        Hey Annie

        I really liked the look of it and so I decided to get it too :-). Thanks for the heads up. Apologies, I didn’t see your affiliate link on your website before I got it otherwise I would have purchased it through that!

        I sent you an email back about the caching plugin. Did you have any luck with that?

    • says

      Hi Annie

      I think we probably are on a similar plane. It’s funny I sometimes feel like I know you, even though we’ve never met!

      Thank you for saying that about this place. It made me smile.

      Right back at you too! It’s one of the many reasons I like stopping by your place too. I know I’m going to get something I’m actually interested in and I love how witty you are in your posts :-). I especially love the videos.

      My wife has a pretty gruelling work schedule. She’s Head of Art at the school where she works as well as a House-mistress in one of the boarding school houses (where we now live). So she’s on duty looking after the girls in the house 4 nights a week until 11pm. That’s when I tend to do a lot of my work, after I’ve put our kids to bed.

      It’s half term holidays this week though so I have less time to be online as everyone is around.

      When I can’t sleep I get up and work on my blog but then the next day, the kids are up usually around 6am, so no time to sleep in here. That’s when the exhaustion kicks in…

  2. says

    Hi Tim,

    Ha ha… Love that graphic there 😉 So that’s what it is, eh?

    I play well at night, so mostly I’m awake overnight 😉 Insomnia? I don’t think neither of us have it. Don’t know, but I love doing my work in a quiet space (Music turned ON) with no interference and sleep in the morning after having breakfast. But only if I have no work to do in the morning 😉

    Well, for me I don’t have much to think about. You know my parents are with me and I just need to focus on my work. But for you there are more responsibilities like looking after your daughter.

    There I can recall something similar when I read through yours that very few times I’ve felt I’m stuck somewhere. Busy doing nothing 😀 lol… Just think about future. Look at number of my draft posts I haven’t finished. Lately start to organize some of my stuff. No blogging as I remember. But gladly I’ve written some cool thoughts in notepad and saved. Don’t know how I got ’em but I really glad I take a note of ’em.

    Yet, for me, I don’t feel being sleepless at night is hindering my thought process as I used to write and comment on blogs :) May be ’cause I’ve used to it already for few months.

    I hope you might not wondering how you come up with such a post after waking up 😉 But if you do, you may get ready for next one.

    Have a good sleep mate :) Hope you come up with a super efficient plan too.


    • says

      Hey Mayura

      I’ve always been a morning person so having a sleepless night can be pretty bad when it comes to being productive.

      When one of my kids wakes at 5.30 am sometimes it can be pretty hellish after a sleepless night! But that’s what having kids is all about. I don’t generally get to have a sleep in the day time either so the tiredness gradually builds up.

      It sounds to me as if you’re pretty organised Mayura. I forget to write things down and then I don’t remember them. I have my iPhone with me but it doesn’t cross my mind to save things in Evernote that often.

      My wife’s on holiday for a week now so we’ve been taking it in turns to lie in each morning. That’s helping somewhat, thank goodness!

      I have a plan to keep things ticking over Mayura but nothing more than that at the moment. Thinking of the future, I’ve been doing some HTML and CSS training so we’ll see where that leads.

      I hope you’re having a great Tuesday.


  3. says

    Oh you poor thing Tim. My mother suffers from that and has all her life. Me, I sleep like a baby pretty much any time and any place. Okay, I can’t fall asleep anywhere but when it’s time to go to bed I have no problem drifting right off. But I also don’t have kids in the house either.

    I do hear you though about the RSS feeds. I’ll go through mine a few times a week and just shake my head. They have become less and less interesting and I’ve found myself unsubscribing to several myself. What a shame. I mean I don’t mind reading about the same topic if they can make it interesting and fun for me but unfortunately that’s not usually the case.

    Hope you’re getting some sleep now and find more interesting posts to read. Try and have a good week okay!


    • says

      Hi Adrienne

      Thankfully it doesn’t happen too often and I’m usually quite tired at the end of each day so I do generally fall asleep pretty quickly.

      The nights that I don’t though can be torture. Lying in bed for hours unless I decide to get up and do some work on my blog.

      The kids are pretty good at night. Generally I don’t hear a peep out of them after they’ve gone to bed but they also tend to wake up around 6am. So after a sleepless night, it’s not that great.

      I know there are hardly any topics that haven’t been covered in blogging but I’m definitely with you on posts needing to be interesting and fun to read. Even if it’s the same old stuff, if it’s got personality then I’m going to read it and comment.

      As time goes on, I’ve broadened the things I talk about on my blog. I try and relate it to the internet marketing as much as possible but at the same time, I seem to have broken out beyond that somewhat too. I may need to reconsider my tag line, although it is still all part of my ‘journey’ I guess.

      My wife is on holiday this week, so we’ve been taking it in turns to lie in each morning. So at least I’m getting more sleep.

      I’m enjoying the week so far spending time as a family though. We went to the zoo this morning so that was good fun.

      I hope you’re having a good week too Adrienne.


  4. says

    I don’t think of it as insomnia. I just tell people in the UK that I operate in a different time zone from rest of them. A 2am bedtime would be an early night for me. It’s more usually 3am, and often then I can’t sleep for “stuff” going round in my head. Work, personal, you name it. Anything but relaxation.

    However that time between 10pm and2pm is when I do my best work because I’m largely free of distractions.

    If I DO need to sleep earlier I take a book to bed so that I can “switch off” from work. Doesn’t always work, but worth a try.


    • says

      Wow Joy, a 3am bedtime! I haven’t seen those early hours since my 20s :-) or since the kids were born.

      My kids generally getting up any time after 6am now so if I have a sleepless night any time, usually the following night I’m out like a light because I’m just exhausted.

      I tend to work between 7pm and 11pm during the week because my wife is on duty as the Housemistress at a boarding school 4 nights a week.

      Hopefully the insomnia will go away soon but if not, I’ll try the book suggestion, thank you :-).


  5. says

    Hi Tim

    I used to be able to sleep 10 to 12 hours a night with no problem until I had a kid. That all went out the window. She is grown and moved on but I still can’t sleep very well at night. Some nights are worse than others. Last night I slept very little and as with you my mind was going in no particular direction. I am thinking surely it is 3 by now…12:30…then it was 1:37 and so on and on the night went. If I had a bigger house with a kitchen that was not back to the bedroom, I would probably get up and make some bread or whatever. If it was a productive awake time, which I have had many in the past, it would be okay. Solution…I took an afternoon nap so I could stay awake until 10 tonight.

    I was thinking the other day, do we have so many designated sleeping hours in a lifetime? If so, then I probably used them all up in my youth.


    • says

      Hey Mary

      Making bread would be a great way to kill some time if you can’t sleep. I haven’t made bread in ages.

      I’m sure my wife would wonder what I was up to though with all the noise going on in the kitchen :-).

      I seem to remember I could sleep much longer before I had kids too as well. I’m sure if they didn’t wake at 6am, I’d probably still be getting more sleep!

      I’ve managed to get a nap in sometimes if my daughter goes down for a sleep but I feel a little guilty that I’m not doing any housework or blogging.

      I sometimes pick my son up from nursery at 3pm though so it’s usually possible to sleep during the day.

      I hope you get some good sleep too Mary. I know how important it is.


    • says

      Hey Khaja

      That sounds perfect. Keeping a strict time about when you sleep would be great. That sort of thing tends to go out of the window though when you have kids.

      I used to always go to bed around 10pm before my wife added Housemistress to her list of employment! Now I’m lucky if it’s before 11pm.

      I shouldn’t complain though as I know eventually the kids will stop getting up at 6am and I’ll have trouble getting them out of bed! :-)

  6. Aaron Brinker says


    It’s so funny that you should talk about this. I am going through this right now a country away from you. I couldn’t sleep either and spent the night writing my post and doing SEO work. It sucks but it’s productive at the same time. I never can tell if its a blessing or a curse. I always regret later in the day but that’s another story to tell….lol…..

    Aaron Brinker aka DadBlunders

    • says

      Hey Aaron

      It sounds like you and I share many similar experiences!

      For whatever reason, it doesn’t happen to me very often but just sometimes my mind takes over proceedings.

      For me, it’s both a blessing and a curse; a blessing because the house is quiet and I can get on with some work but also a curse because the kids wake up at 6am and I feel like I’ve had no sleep!

      I hope you’ve recovered from your sleepless night too now and have had a great week so far Aaron.


      • Aaron Brinker says

        Recovered as much as possible…lol… It seems it goes in cycles. The nice thing though…it is one of the few times i get things done on my blog uninterrupted. I love my son with all my heart but it drives me nuts when I have one of those “rare” ideas during the day hours and I try to record it . It never works out that well for me thus I spend a lot of late nights or early mornings working on the blog….sigh

        side note:

        You need to join the dadbloggers group on facebook Tim – I have a feeling you would like it and you can connect with a lot of dad that can help with a variety things.

        Aaron Brinker aka Dad Blunders

        • says

          Hey Aaron

          My daughter still has a nap during the day and that’s when I get an hour or so done on my blog.

          I know what you mean about when ideas come though. I need to make sure I capture those whenever they happen, even it they are rare!

          I’m terrible, thinking I’ll get it written down when I get the chance and then completely forget because something else happens.

          The dadbloggers group sounds like a great idea, Aaron. I’ve requested to join. Thanks for the heads up!

  7. Theodore Nwangene says

    You’re never alone Tim,
    Infact, i just felt the same way recently which i talked on my latest post. Last week, i just felt like deleting my blog and selling my laptop, but i was able to overcome that state after reading some motivational books.

    We just have to keep the ball rolling my man.

    More strength to you.

    • says

      Hey Theodore

      I know how you feel. There are times that I feel much the same as you but I think we would both regret deleting our blogs.

      Great that you found some motivation and I’m with you on keeping the ball rolling!

  8. Andrew Stark says

    Personally I would have thought that SEO blogs are the perfect cure for insomnia.

    I don’t generally suffer, but like most parents late evening can be the most productive time to be online which coupled with earlier starts can result in IDS – Irritable Dad Syndrome.

    Oh, and to get over the lack of good RSS content put forward some guest post suggestions, that way you’ll be in control and get some excellent branding.


    • says

      Hi Andrew

      Lol, you’re right about SEO blogs; I should read more of them to send me to sleep :-)!

      I suffer from the same thing sometimes – IDS. It’s inevitable I guess and particularly at this time of year with the dark mornings.

      I’ve had a few guest post requests but they’ve been from people I’ve never connected with so I’ve turned them down.

      Guest post suggestions would be a good way to go. At least I’d get what I was looking for! Thanks for the suggestion.


  9. says

    Oh yes, about 3 years for me Tim. That’s why I started my other blog inspire. I couldn’t sleep and was bored watching TV. So I worked on my online stuff and after retail sties went into blogs. It’s never ending now. I do get naps on the weekends sometimes and it feels like I catch up. There are some nights I do get 7 hours sleep. Rarely 8 or more though. I love being up early and going to be early. But when I awake at 2 and can’t get back to sleep, it’s tough the next afternoon to get through it. I hope you don’t have it every night.

    • says

      Hey Lisa

      It’s cool that not being able to sleep meant you started your blog; A great way to kill a few hours if you can’t sleep.

      My wife’s on holiday this week, so we’ve been taking it in turns to sleep in and I managed to get a cool 8 hours sleep last night!

      It means I’m all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed and raring to go.

      We’re taking a trip down the coast today. It was snowing yesterday but it’s supposed to be much nicer today.

      I hope you’re having a great week Lisa.


  10. says

    I’m sitting here reading your blog while I really ought to be hitting the pillow. Just sayin… :-)

    I have those sleepless nights too, Tim. I admire how you made positive of the situation.

    • says

      Hey Barrett

      Glad that you’re reading my blog! Thank you.

      Do you find you’re productive when you get those sleepless nights Barrett?

      I’m trying to integrate my every day life into blogging so insomnia was definitely blog fodder as it’s part of the internet marketing journey :-).

      If I can make it conversational, interesting and it gets people talking, all the better!

  11. Sapna says

    HI Tim

    I have been into software industry where there have been sleepless more often. For the last one year it has been a true struggle where I have been sleeping for less than 6 hrs.
    The priority of the things have been changing quite often and more so since the time I opened my blogging shop. For me the ball has to be kept rolling till june and after that an audit will be done for sure.

    Hope you have recovered and it is not insomnia I feel.

    Have a great day.


    • says

      Hi Sapna

      I think it’s probably not insomnia either, just a sleepless night perhaps. It was starting to feel like it was happening every week though.

      This week I’ve had lots of time for relaxing with my family as it is the school holidays.

      Less than 6 hours for me would be a killer after a while. Every now and again I need to top it up to at least 8 hours.

      What happens in June? Is that when you’re going to assess where you are with your plans?

      • Sapna says

        Hi Tim

        Yes, in June I need to assess that, if I’m going nowhere with my blog, I need to go for major changes.

        Thanks for all your support Tim.


        • says

          Hey Sapna

          That sounds like a great plan. I’m sure you’re well on the way to being on the right track!

          I maybe need to do the same thing. I need to rethink my tag line for sure.

          I hope you’re having a great weekend Sapna.

  12. says

    Hi Tim,

    I’m fortunate in that I’ve only rarely suffered from insomnia. My main problem these days is just finding enough time to fit in the zzzzz’s – I’ve been through phases recently when I’ve only been getting 5 or 6 hours a night and I just can’t survive on that. I watched an episode of Borgen the other day in which one of the characters, a young journalist, said ‘sleep’s for old people’ – well, I must be old people!

    I gather Maggie Thatcher used to survive on 4 or 5 hours when she was PM, but look at the state of her by the time she was kicked out – I think it took its toll.

    So, it’s nearly 10.15, I’ve got to be up by 6 to walk the hounds, and I want to do some reading before lights out, so I’ve got to get off this computer NOW – I’ve made myself a faithful promise I’ll be in my pyjamas, teeth brushed and flossed and climbing under the duvet by 10.30 every night this week – so night night!

    I hope you get some good shut-eye yourself tonight – sweet dreams!


    PS Camomile tea’s a good relaxant – if you can’t face Horlicks!

    • says

      Hi Sue

      I definitely couldn’t survive on 5 or 6 hours for too long! I tend to get around 7 but I’m usually in need of at least 8 hours.

      I think Maggie Thatcher and Tony Blair both looked terrible by the time they were kicked out. Tony Blair particularly looked about 30 years older than when he entered office!

      Sleeps definitely not for old people, although the older I get, the more I seem to need.

      It’ll be my 40th birthday this year and I’m beginning to think that falling asleep is something that I’ll never do though!

      My kids usually get up no later than 6 am and are on the go as soon as they wake up.

      I shouldn’t complain though as I know they’ll eventually be moody teenagers who won’t want to get out of bed at all!

  13. says

    Hi Tim,
    I notice I have trouble sleeping when we are close or getting close to a full moon. I usually read a book for an hour before going to bed and this usually helps me to fall asleep. Also, I listen to Brainwave entrainment to get my brainwaves to chill out so I can easily fall asleep.

    • says

      Hey Justin

      I find that if I start thinking of something before I go to bed then I’m doomed.

      I can’t help it. Something pops into my head and my mind is away.

      I’ve tried clearing my mind of things but so far it hasn’t worked.

      I may try listening to music or a podcast as that might help. Thanks for the tip.

  14. Dan Black says

    Just last night I had a hard time going to bed because my mind was racing. I did not sleep a lot but sure was able to brainstorm and think. I make sure to keep my phone or pen & paper near me so I can write down anything I want to remember.

    • says

      Hey Dan

      It’s great that you can brainstorm when you can’t sleep.

      I usually end up thinking about general stuff and nothing of much use!

      I always have my iPhone on me but I can’t remember the last time I added any notes to Evernote when I’m out and about.

      I have to try and do something about that!

      • Dan Black says

        I found a good thought is easily forgotten. That’s why I like to capture it right away. I’ve had times when I have tried to wait but lost the thought.

  15. says

    Hey Tim,
    I’ve always had trouble sleeping. If I get 5-6 hours of solid sleep though, I’m golden. 8 hours? Can’t remember the last time that happened. When the kids were younger, as yours are, egads. Never! Print out some SEO best practices and see if you can catch some Zzzz’s reading that stuff.

    You wake up at 2 am and start thinking about things: Life, business, um blogging 😉 forget about that too. I stopped fighting it and sometimes just get up and go.

    Anyway … stay positive Sir. Just keep grinding away :)

    I’ve been culling my RSS list in a big way. In fact, I’ve stopped reading many of the big blogs I was once enamored with.

    • says

      Hi Craig

      It’s been school holidays this week and the kids have been keeping me extra busy; I’ve had no problem sleeping :-).

      Wow, 5-6 hours sleep and I’d be the grumpiest daddy alive! After a sleepless night, that’s certainly what I can become.

      That’s why I couldn’t imagine getting up at 2 am and starting work. I really wish I could. That would turn into a long day.

      I’m certainly up for the grind and it’s all generally positive. I’ve spent less time online this week and that’s helped.

      I now have a core set of blogs which I visit, including yours of course and I try and branch out from there.

      I’ve never really followed blogs such as ProBlogger or Seth Godin. I’m all about creating the relationships and building a community I think.

  16. Bill Dorman says

    Good luck with that ‘super efficient’ thing; I still can’t master it.

    My day job has taken me out of the commenting and blogs, but it’s not a bad thing. At this particular moment I’m kicking some serious butt so that is the wave I will be riding for now….but that’s just the way it is, huh?

    • says

      Hey Bill

      Super efficient and me don’t really connect generally! I’m trying to be Super Dad instead :-).

      I’m really pleased to see your comments whenever they appear here Bill. It’s a pity you live across the other side of the pond otherwise, I’d take you out for a beer or two!

      Glad to hear you’re kicking some butt though. I wish I were! Maybe I need to write a few 99 cent eBooks too…

  17. says

    Hi Tim, I have insomnia when I’m stressed about stuff. I find it best to escape mentally into a world of fiction. I think of my favorite serialized TV show and think about what will happen next. Reality can be just too harsh sometimes.

    • says

      Hey Carolyn

      It does tend to be the same for me; stress is often a factor when it comes to my insomnia.

      It’s funny how when I finally do get to sleep and then wake up the next morning, I often wonder what I was concerned about; in the cold light of day, things can become so much clearer.

      I’m terrible. I never find time to read fiction and I’m sure that would help. The books around me are all children’s books which I don’t think would help! :-)

  18. says

    Hi Tiim,

    It sure sounds like insomnia to me!

    My sister has a serious case and she just can’t go back to sleep if she wakes up in the night.

    Try to review what you eat or drink on nights you have symptoms. Keep a journal of everything you can think of that you ingested the previous day. After some time patterns may begin to emerge…

    • says

      Hey Yeremi

      Oh dear, your sister must be exhausted when that happens. I tend to be able to get to sleep eventually if I get up and do something for a couple of hours.

      It tends to be things I’ve been a little stressed about that triggers the sleeplessness off. I need to try and clear my mind before I go to bed I think but it’s not always easy.

      Thank you for the suggestions. I’d not thought that it could be food or drink related so I’ll keep an eye out for patterns.

      I hope you’re having a great weekend Yeremi.

  19. says

    Phew, so glad that you could at least find a bit of positivity in this.

    I’ve been an insomniac ever since I was diagnosed with Depression about an year ago and I must admit I haven’t been able to recover fully.

    My health is always at a risk and I’m scared what major complications might be in store for me. I tried to change my lifestyle but it’s been tough.

    Though the level of intensity isn’t as high as it first was, there are always flashes of resurgence and those days are just nightmarish!

    I hope I can do something about my ‘nemesis’ quickly!

    Take good care, you have a family to take care :)


    • says

      Hey Aditya

      I have a family member who was diagnosed with Depression a few years back. It’s certainly a struggle to fully recover and I feel for you.

      One day at a time is all you can do Aditya. Don’t think too far ahead and you’ll get there I’m sure.

      It can’t be nice when you do get flashes of resurgence. I think I’d seek out someone I feel very comfortable with on those days and spend some time with them.

      Here’s sending you some positive vibes Aditya. I really hope you’re having a great weekend.


  20. says

    Howdy Tim…
    I liked your post on Insomnia and often times experience the same. Sometimes it’s a Plus and sometimes Not. Being a new blogger (been trying since 2009) I feel that I am inching ahead. Being a fledgling in this fantastic world of blogging…most of my insomnia is caused by my blogging or marketing questions that I toss into my sub-concious mind when it’s time to sleep. It begins to react like a popcorn machine and ultimately keeps me from a sound sleep! I do find most of the thoughts to be pretty good solution suggestions however, I do end up with several “tired” days. Love your post!

    • says

      Hey Les

      It sounds as if you use insomnia to your advantage. I wish I could!

      Most of the time, my mind races because I’m stressed about something and I can’t resolve it.

      Everything always seems so much clearer in the morning in any case and I wonder why I felt so stressed!

      Thank you for your comments Les and I hope you’re having a great weekend.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *