My goodness, the bipolar mind can really spin itself into a frenzy sometimes, eh? (reviewing my last entry...)
Anyway, today I just wanted to mention a couple of helpful and natural tools I have found here on the Internet for those dreaded sleepless nights. I am curious as to what others find useful for getting to sleep, but I suppose I should wait on opening that Q up for discussion til (if/when) I have more readers. :)
These three sites have helped me on occasion:
1) www.librivox.org --> Have someone read a story to you until you nod off into dreamland.
Perhaps it is a comfort based on nostalgia, but this has helped me sometimes. Volunteers reading aloud works in the public domain. Here you can find some old goodies from childhood to get your imagination painting pictures like they used to, with stories such as The Secret Garden or The Wind in the Willows. You can find works by Dostoyevsky, Hemingway, Flaubert, Tolstoy, or if you prefer, de Tocqueville, Thoreau, Machiavelli, Kant, Nietzsche... or you can even find Einstein's Theory of Relativity, Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, or audio versions of amendments to The Constitution. Plenty of everything for whatever floats your boat, and for whatever you're in the mood for that day.
2) www.live365.com --> Internet Radio.
There are some soothing music channels on this site that can aid in relaxation. Channels such as Healing and Relaxation, Meditation Music, or Econocast with nature sounds... pretty new-agey, I know, and not of my usual music genres but these can help nonetheless. Of course, this site also has loads of channels encompassing almost every other type of music you can imagine, so there is a lot of mood-boosting to be found here.
3) www.soundsleeping.com --> "Relaxing music, sleep aids, anxiety reduction, relaxation tools"
Here you can find an array of sleep-inducing music to download as well -- including music with 'delta waves' (slow, low frequency waves which apparently correspond with your brain's deep sleep mode). There's a cool tool here with separate volume and pan knobs with which you can, for example, listen to birds chirping quietly over the lulling sound of a babbling creek. Or crickets with rain. Or windchimes and the ocean. Or you can sit back and close your eyes to just the crackling of a bonfire, which I personally like to do from time to time (although I'd prefer the real thing...!).
Hope these help!