A little night music
Several years ago I found it helpful to listen to music when trying to go to sleep. Particularly good was an ambient music program on the local NPR station. Echoes, which is described as a "two-hour music soundscape" on its website, is tailor-made for such purposes. I don't mean that as a slight against the music on the show, even if it what appears on it isn't what I'd likely listen to during more wakeful parts of the day. It is good for passive listening, especially when trying to relax.
I hadn't listened to the show in a long time, but last week, for whatever reason, I tuned it in on the clock radio by my bed. I'd been trying to get the classical music station, but its move to a new frequency appears to mean I can't pull it in where I live. As I scanned down the dial, I landed upon the show I used to turn to for winding down.
It's been a stressful couple of weeks, so listening to Echoes has been good for attempting to clear my mind as I try to get to sleep. The only problem is that the show runs from 10 p.m. to midnight Mondays through Fridays. Typically it's unusual for me to hit the sack before 12 a.m., but I'm making an effort to curl up with the radio by 11:30. (Let's face it, I could stand to get to bed earlier, especially on weeknights.)
Depending how I set the sleep timer, I'll drift in and out of BBC news. On the weekend I've ended up hearing radio drama, which was actually kind of interesting, and what is the public radio version of a Saturday night dance party mix.
I hadn't engaged in this old habit of falling asleep to the radio. I think I did it fairly often growing up too, although the music was surely livelier. Honestly, sometimes it probably ends up keeping me awake longer. Still, it's kind of nice, and if it improves my sleeping habits, it can't be a bad thing.