Please only state ideas that have personally helped you, in your daily experience, not a hypothetical answer from a website, that might be helpful.

I have had major problems with sleep at least since I was a teenager, and extraordinary sleeping hours. I feel that if allowed to, I could probably go to sleep one hour later every day, until I was back to normal.

I have read dozens of articles on the Internet, and talked to family and friends, I have tried dozens of suggestions. Nothing has worked for me. I feel that perhaps one or two ideas from someone, that are attestable, that actually worked in their personal life experience, might work.

Note: For reference I can state some tips for the converse, how to stay up longer, to indicate the kind of advice I'm looking for: eat oranges, drink protein powder, go out into the light and walk around, take a strategically timed nap halfway between waking up and desired bedtime.

Note 2: I do not want to take sleeping pills or medications, although supplements would be potentially acceptable.

Note 3: If you are aware of something that definitely makes it harder for you to get to sleep, to avoid, that could be potentially relevant and interesting.

Note 4: This is a good summary of quality and useful, but generic, advice:

Note 5: Any mental or physical activities that are attestably good at causing rapid exhaustion would be worth mentioning.

2 Answers 2


Sleep Hygiene is the first line treatment for most insomnia. This is another good list from Harvard.

Anecdotally, the principles of it that worked best for me were blackout curtains, removing everything including TV from the room (the saying is "the bed is just for sleep and sex"), never reading or using my phone in bed, not eating within 3 hrs, and bright lights in the morning.

Also consider asking your doctor, since it's been going on so long, because there are a number of treatable causes of insomnia such as sleep apnea or other sleep disorders, depression, anxiety, GERD, etc. Conditions like sleep apnea can be dangerous if untreated.


When I was young I had the same problem. From experience I've learned to stick to the following.

Focus on the time you want to get up, not on bedtime. So, just get up at the time you want to get up regardless of how much sleep I got. The more physically fit you are, the less you'll be bothered by the lack of sleep for a few days. Also, by sticking to your exercise routine when changing your biorhythm (you may need to reduce the intensity and duration of exercise if you sleep less than 5 to 6 hours), you'll fall asleep at the right time. The fitter you are, the more the effects of the lack of sleep will be confined to cognitive functions, you'll still have plenty of energy to exert yourself physically.

E.g. today I had to get up 2 hours earlier than usual, I went to bed one hour earlier, but I stayed awake for half an hour longer than usual. Nevertheless I got up at the right time and I didn't skip my exercise of one hour fast running. Now, before I started to run I felt like dozing off, so it would have been very tempting for me to skip today's exercise, but had I done that that might have affected the sleep I'm about to get in an hour from now.

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