(04-14-2016, 04:17 PM)robysue Wrote: You need to learn how to NOT focus on your breathing when you are trying to get to sleep. It really is that simple. And that hard. Because one of the hardest things to do is to NOT focus on your breathing when you've got a six foot tube stuck on your nose that's following every breath you take during the night.
It's like the old Chinese aphorism that the pill will work only if you do not think of a monkey for a full minute before you take it.
But this is a double bind: trying not to think of a monkey is precisely thinking of a monkey! And trying to ignore your breathing means that you are thinking about your breathing, which is exactly what you don't want to do!
I can suggest a little trick that might or might not work. Try sitting for say five minutes during the day and be very intensely aware of every single breath. If you are like me you won't be able to do it - your mind will drift off to other things very quickly.
So instead of fighting an awareness of breathing you might try paying it very close attention. You might find that very shortly you will forget about your breathing. Or you might not, no guarantees. It might be worth the experiment, though.
If you do that with the intent to learn how to ignore your breathing it probably won't work, because that's just another disguised form of the thing you want to stop!
And trying is your problem. In order to stop worrying about your breathing you have to stop worrying about your worry. Trying not to worry is precisely worrying! Being anxious is bad enough, but being anxious about your anxiety really puts you in a pickle. I speak from long experience in that department, believe me.
The above is my opinion. It is just possible that I may, occasionally, be mistaken.
I am neither a Doctor, nor any other kind of medical professional.
Everything put together sooner or later falls apart.