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Sleeping after a performance or rehearsal


cedar

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I have always been a very inconsistent sleeper, but I find it especially hard to mellow out and turn the brain off after a performance, or even just a rehearsal.

 

In fact, in a way the rehearsals are worse. Presumably because a rehearsal entails playing a tune repeatedly, I will continue to hear it incessantly after my head hits the pillow.

 

To get a tune out of my head, sometimes I try to recall some completely different music. But this doesn't really work. It's like trying to tell yourself not to think of an elephant (which only makes you think of the elephant).

 

Incidentally, my ordinary sleep routine is to read a book until my eyes get tired. But this does not seem to get my mind off music after a lengthy rehearsal or performance.

 

Anyone have any good coping mechanisms? I'm hoping the answer is not just some combination of alcohol and drugs.

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I try to sleep during a performance. This does nothing to solve your problem.. but you play very relaxed.

 

Meditation, from the India perspective, Himalayan yogis, would be the best chance of controlling what has been called monkey mind.

 

Here is a video that shows the monkey mind in various guises.

 

Also, a nice accordion in the background :

 

[video:youtube]

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Violating the "No drugs" request, I get very good results from a doxylamine succinate pill in conjunction with a pink noise generator (my sleep problem being that every environmental sound stimulates my brain). If I have sinus drainage / sneezing problems, I switch the pill to a couple of diphenhydramine (commercial name Benadryl in the US).

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How badly do you hate it? Our brains do some of their best work when we sleep and dream. Why not go with the natural flow?

 

The point is that I am not getting to sleep.

 

I take it you tried to ' mediate ' yourself to sleep ? What I do is visualize calm activities, like gardening. This kind of mind control technique slightly reduces heart beat and possibly blood pressure.

 

If this technique does not work. If I were you, I would be checking your heart rate and BP. These are separate.

 

Don't ignore this, It can have consequences. Don't procrastinate on seeing your Doctor. either.

Why fit in, when you were born to stand out ?

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I have Wikipedia Mobile on my phone just for this purpose. I'll pull up anything I'm sort of interested in at the time, and once the text starts to get blurry (under 15 minutes if I'm tired) the phone goes on the bed stand and I'm out.

 

Pink noise generators helped once I got two of them and set them on opposite sides of the bedroom at their lowest setting. It's a barely perceptible whoosh that bathes the entire bedroom and works best for me.

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Not strictly related to sleep, but I've found that when I am obsessed with some music in my head, listening to some Frank Zappa usually helps to get rid of it.

Not sure if Zappa's music would perhaps make your insomnia worse... :D

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From what I've learned lately, I'd be very careful about this. The reason the stuff gets stuck in your head is because you are working on it. Pushing it out might make you lose the benefits of that. Also, alcohol and drugs may cause your brain to not incorporate what you've learned during the day in sleep.

 

 

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Here is a musician who seems to have suffered from a similar problem. He used a rhythmic approach to trick his wired brain into falling sleep. I can't attest to the method's effectiveness (I can often fall asleep after drinking a cup of coffee), but maybe this will work for you. Good luck.

[video:youtube]

 

 

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It's a serious issue for me, as I play music several times a week: rehearsals, gigs, whatever. I get home, and my brain is buzzing. Well, sad to say a martini or two puts me down. I'm looking for alternatives.

 

One thing that's working well is putting the headphones on and playing what's in my head. 30 minutes of headphone therapy seems to lessen my desire for alcohol after a gig.

 

Just trying to figure it all out. I've figured out (duh) that playing live is super stimulation to my aged neurons, so how to cope? All good.

Want to make your band better?  Check out "A Guide To Starting (Or Improving!) Your Own Local Band"

 

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I also have trouble decompressing especially after a gig.

 

As a matter of fact, Im sitting on the patio having a Famous Grouse (or two) after playing 6-10, packing up and an hour drive home. At least it wasnt a 9-1 gig.

 

I havent used Ambien or related medications for years and they were recently issued a relatively rare FDA black box warning. Didnt some Kennedy in Congress claim that Ambien caused his car crash a few years ago? I just figured it was a well-connected person getting out of a DUI with the cooperation of the DC police, but perhaps not. People have done some really crazy stuff after taking those drugs.

 

https://www.livescience.com/65372-ambien-new-fda-warning.html

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Here is a musician who seems to have suffered from a similar problem. He used a rhythmic approach to trick his wired brain into falling sleep. I can't attest to the method's effectiveness (I can often fall asleep after drinking a cup of coffee), but maybe this will work for you. Good luck.

[video:youtube]

 

Public speaking is not this guy's forte. He appears to have studied or taken a course and is applying a list of techniques but nothing works like it is supposed to.

 

Melatonin in the form of a liquid spray, not the tablet/pill or drop forms, works on me to get a deeper level of rest when I have to sleep on call.

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Melatonin only helps get to sleep, not stay asleep. Anything more is placebo, which is also effective!

 

I recommend searching for DBT Sleep Hygiene Protocol to see if that helps with poor sleep overall.

 

Additionally, I think what the OP describes is common across many professions.

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Melatonin only helps get to sleep, not stay asleep. Anything more is placebo, which is also effective!

Whether it is supported by medical research or not, which I have not found that it is, staying asleep is irrelevant given the OP's problem. Additionally, there is an obvious benefit of falling asleep to beginning the process of achieving quality rest. I do sleep deeper....I have not been hooked up to any monitoring to truly measure depth......I just know I tend to sleep without waking, I have dreamed and I wake up feeling more rested and this is on call.

 

The "on call" is crucial as I have had trouble turning off and shutting down for rest. It has been relatively easy to push myself and that became the norm so I could go a long time with less rest. The concepts of push/force/drive cannot be applied to letting go/relaxing/shutting down in order to sleep. When I grow tired I tend to have boosts or bursts which bring me back and as the requirement for sleep comes, (i.e. knowing I will only have a certain window to get it in before I will not have another opportunity for too long a period), I cannot take advantage of it. I may only toss and turn with butterflies or get a shallow rest not fully in deep sleep mode if I finally fall asleep.

 

Melotonin has allowed me to work around all of this and get the best quality of rest and in the given time I have. It does not work every time for me unfortunately but it does help frequently. As for placebos, again, I have not been hooked up to monitoring it could all be a placebo effect. I have tried other things with less to no success. Medical research suggests Melatonin works for many people in a variety of applications.

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I have used melatonin from time to time. Be careful to not take it for prolonged periods. It is actually naturally occurring in your body and is tied to your body's natural circadian rhythm. That is the context in which I've used it successfully. Because of my schedule, it is difficult to maintain a normal sleep schedule. I've used it to "reset" my clock by taking it at the exact time every night for maybe a week at a time. As others have said, I would often wake up a little while later, but by establishing the routine, my body eventually took over.

 

I'm not sure how much that would help in the long term after a very late gig since it wouldn't coincide with a normal circadian rhythm. If it's an earlier rehearsal and coincides with a normal bed time, then maybe so.

 

I have the same problem and have resigned myself to just end up with less sleep on weekends when I have gigs in order to not screw up my normal sleep. I used to sleep in, which meant I couldn't get to sleep Sunday night and would have my work week messed up. Better to spend Sunday dead tired, get to head early, and start Monday morning with a good night's sleep.

Dan

 

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The potential to reset a sleep cycle is there and if you use it counter to your main routine you might put in motion an inconvenient or incompatible sleeptime cycle. But it is temporary. Your body is producing melatonin with the cycles of daylight and darkness all the time. At least in areas of the world receiving a fair amount of daylight and darkness every 24 hours the body is going to have this natural tendency to synchronize with this. But for random one-offs it can successfully trick the body into feeling it has naturally reached its nighttime level and it is ready for sleep at any time of the day whether it is in conjunction with winding down well past your regular bedtime or some window of opportunity in the middle of the day.

 

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The earlier thread on this topic prompted me to investigate CBD, and since then I've come to swear by it. And since it's become much more mainstream, it's available in many forms. Lately I'm a fan of the straight tincture in a cup of hot tea about 1-2 hours before bed, but I've got some cocktail bitters on the way that I'm looking forward to trying also. The catch is that the quality varies greatly because it's still so unregulated, so there are a lot of crummy products out there. If you want a recommendation for a good supplier, PM me.

 

Also, clichéd and annoying though it is, maintaining a generally healthy eating and exercise regimen really does help a good deal.

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I don't have this problem with rehearsals, but after long high-energy gigs (for example, large weddings) it does take me a while to get ready for sleep.

 

It doesn't help that the big energy performance is followed by all the load-out schlep exertion. But I have been afraid of medicating (alcohol or other substances).

 

I end up eating a small meal and taking a shower - sometimes that helps, sometimes it doesn't. I gotta believe Josh's suggestion about healthy eating and staying fit will help me a lot more...if I could just get consistent with those things.

..
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I'm the opposite. I get very tired after performances. Like once I fall asleep, I'm a rock.

 

As far as sleeping issues otherwise, I also have tried melatonin. Works sometimes, sometimes not. Usually takes at least an hour to affect anything.

 

Something to check out is what's known as "grounding" or "earthing". It does indeed help me fall asleep more quickly. I had to quit using it for a while because I thought it was making me tend to sleep too long but that may not have been it. It has other health benefits so it's worth a shot. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3265077/

 

My pad is from this place: https://www.earthing.com/

 

My father and I have done some testing with homemade metal plates and it also lowers excess voltage in your body by around five to fifteen volts, though as you have more in you the lowering grows exponentially.

 

Do be aware that if you use blood thinners (warfarin, etc), it naturally thins your blood a little bit.

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I have this issue. I found that part of it was my ears ringing or perhaps it was just another symptom....loud shows were the hardest to sleep after.

 

Going to in-ear monitors largely solved the issue, though I still am somewhat amped. The toughest gigs are the ones with an hour-plus drive that end late--to make it home I sometimes have to drink coffee or a soda, and then it's even harder to sleep that night...

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First read to prepare for landing. Currently: "A Brief History of Everyone Who's Ever Lived."

 

Then: podcast in the ears, at volume low enough to function as a burble but just high enough not to cause strain to hear.

 

+

 

Glorious sounds of nature from Alexa.

 

+

 

Very dark room (i.e., no screen lights of any kind).

 

= magic go-to-sleep dust.

 

For some reason my previous solution of "drink until your brain is soggy and pass out in surrender" seemed to have some unhealthy side-effects.

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Drinking affects REM sleep, it's not good because you won't get quality sleep. I take Neurotin here and there. Tons of musicians I know can't get to sleep and the whole next day is ruined, especially if it's an out of town gig the night before where travel is concerned or just a late night.

"Danny, ci manchi a tutti. La E-Street Band non e' la stessa senza di te. Riposa in pace, fratello"

 

 

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Really good point on the drinking. I tend to have a few beers at gigs, and of course occasionally people might buy the band a round of something :) Then I get home and maybe have a beer thinking it might help me sleep...I GET to sleep, but never feel rested the next day, and that jives with what Outkaster is saying.
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