We live in an age where it seems that we NEED to feel stress in our lives.
Being so busy that we're literally run off our feet is often celebrated and, as a result, this stress affects us in the one place where it really matters: our sleep.
We have to make sleep a priority in our lives because we know that it's going to benefit our long-term health, yet we still feel the need to burn the candle at both ends.
So, how can we make the most of our busy lives, but also still make sleep a priority?
Look at your sleep environment
If we have a sleep environment that doesn't lend itself well to rest and relaxation, it's hardly a surprise that we aren't waking up feeling rested. It's not just about the electronics that we use; it's also about the space as a whole. You can make your sleep area a more relaxing space by decluttering it, but you should also think about the bed itself. Think about getting a better mattress, especially if you haven't changed it in a long time. On 360Homeware.com.au/collections/mattresses there's a wide variety of mattresses.
Aim for at least 8 hours
A lot of us live without any sense of structure. It's important that we get an adequate amount of hours, which means that we've got to get into the habit of going to bed at a certain time. Our bodies crave structure. Have you ever got to sleep really late, but still woke up early the next morning? Prioritise going to bed at the same time every night. But also have a winding down routine. Much like athletes warm-up before exercise, you need to warm down before you go to bed.
Some people can't get off to sleep so easily, so if you feel you're constantly groggy, don't deprive yourself of the luxury of getting in a nap; you'll feel a lot better for it. And if you're worried about feeling worse after your nap, try the caffeine nap approach. When you drink a small cup of coffee, the caffeine can take around 20 minutes to enter your system. If you have a nap in that time, it recharges your body without the grogginess when you wake up.
Remember, it's part of a healthy lifestyle
We seem to have an approach to sleep that it's something we have to do, but not necessarily want to do. If you don't get the adequate amount, it will impact you across the board. It raises your risk for diseases like cancer or a heart attack, but also, not having as much sleep means your concentration is going to suffer, you're going to be irritable, and your quality of life is going to decrease.
Much like exercising makes people feel more energetic and better about themselves, think about sleep as a similar thing. You know when you have had a good night's sleep, you wake up feeling refreshed.
The right diet & supplements
Diet has a lot to do with it sleep quality. And it's not just about eating the right foods, but it's about when you eat. It's important you give yourself 2 hours after your last meal before bedtime. If you go to bed too soon, your body is trying harder to break down that food. So if you can make sure you eat within a certain window, but then give yourself that time to unwind before bed, your body won't work so hard. If it's not stating the obvious, you should avoid stimulating foods; this includes alcohol, and even sugar. You should think about your body being in a state ready to sleep, this means that you shouldn't push so many stimulating things through it.
In addition, you should think about the best supplements, especially in terms of your lifestyle. Specifically in relation to sleep, melatonin supplements can help. This is the sleep hormone our body creates. On Vitamingrocer.com.au/collections/melatonin you can browse melatonin supplements and see if it works for you. In addition to this, magnesium has been shown to have a positive impact on the quality of sleep. If you're someone that gets the hours in, but not necessarily feels good the next day, this is another avenue.