Yinova Center
37 West 17th Street, Suite 300
New York, NY 10011
Book Now
Blog / Insomnia

Why do I Wake Up at the Same Time Every Night?

Many of my patients ask me this question. The Chinese medicine clock offers answers. Every 2 hours the energy runs through a different meridian. If the energy is unbalanced in a certain meridian, we may have trouble sleeping during the corresponding time. Take a look at the chart below and see if it resonates with you.

9 to 11pm – Triple Energizer Time

You may be stuck in the flight or fight mode, too stressed to fall asleep.  Triple energizer controls intake, transformation, and elimination. It also regulates your immune system and can be disturbed by anesthesia. Survival feelings may surface and you may feel like everything is a threat to your physical and emotional being, you may not be able to fall asleep or wake up shortly after falling asleep, frightened and confused.

Balancing theme and affirmations: I am safe and I am letting go. I am allowing myself to relax, knowing that I am safe no matter what.

11 to 1am – Gall Bladder Time

The gall bladder channel starts right outside of the eye, so it’s all about looking outward. Have you found yourself being frustrated or judgmental of yourself or others? It is not by chance that we use to say “the gall of this person” when we experience these kind of feelings. You may also need to take a look at your diet and eat healthier oils.

Balancing theme and affirmations: I reach out with kindness, mercy, and forgiveness toward myself and the people around me.

1 to 3am – Liver Time

The majority of my patients complain of waking up between these times, and this comes as no surprise as the liver has so many functions, from both the Eastern and Western perspective. You may experience hormonal imbalances and digestive problems. In Chinese medicine, the liver is said to open in the eyes and can be associated with inner seeing. Similarly to the gall bladder, a liver imbalance may manifest itself as anxiety, guilt, rage, anger and frustration – all self-directed. Are you happy with your life? What are you saying to yourself, silently and out loud?

Balancing theme and affirmations: I love and like myself. I accept myself as I am and talk kindly to myself.

3 to 5am – Lung Time

You are breathing every moment of your life, whether you are consciously aware of it or not! If you wake up at those early hours, ask yourself: Do I have faith? Am I able to let go and allow things to flow just like breath, without trying to control things? People waking up at these early hours may have experienced deep grief and sadness that has not been processed. If your intention is to wake up early in the morning and you are feeling refreshed, then this is the perfect time for deep breathing and meditation.

Balancing theme and affirmations: I have faith that all is working out perfectly. I am feeling the grief and sadness and letting go of it with each exhalation.

5 to 7am – Large intestine

Letting go is the mantra of the large intestine. Are you able to flush out and let go of toxins? You may feel controlled in your relationships, or you may try to always be in control of what others do. It’s only building more of the same, more toxicity and waste accumulation. Constipation and other digestive issues may be a problem for you. For some people this is the time when they naturally wake up.

Balancing theme and affirmations: I am releasing whatever is not serving me. I am allowing the people around me to be who they really are. And I am allowing myself to let go and make space for the new and the healthy.

Hope you got some ‘Ah-HA!’s.
Share with your friends and family.


This article has been first published on the author’s personal blog. 

Damiana Corca is an Acupuncturist and Clinical Herbalist specializing in Sleep Disorders, and a friend of the Yinova Center. She is passionate about helping people sleep soundly to live their most healthy and fulfilled lives. To read more articles and learn more about her practice in Boulder, Colorado, visit her website here.

Schedule your appointment online or give us a call

We are open seven days a week, with appointment times available all day. We have locations in Manhattan and Brooklyn and also offer concierge visits. See All Locations.

Book An Appointment