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Is Sleep Really That Important?

Sleep is SUPER important but it is something many people struggle to get. It is also something many people feel guilty for having when they actually do get it. Yes, guilty. In the book Burnout by Emily and Amelia Nagoski, they talk all about sleep and why it is actually essential to your existence here on Earth. Sleep is as important and necessary as breathing. They also talk about how because of how the world operates, society has made us feel like sleep and rest are a non-essential parts of life and if we have it, we are lazy and not doing enough. How messed up is that?! I’m here to let you know getting adequate sleep will actually help you be a better person.

Here are the reasons why:

  • Reduces stress and improves your mood

  • Lower your risk for serious health problems

  • Supports weight management

  • Helps your body heal

  • Helps combat germs and keep your immune system strong

  • Reduces risk of injury

  • Increases attention span

  • Improve social relationships

  • Boosts memory and learning

See! I told you sleep and getting adequate amounts of rest is good for you! Throw away the guilt and the negative thoughts surrounding taking time to rest. Resting…taking a break…getting enough sleep actually makes you a better human.

Here are some tips to help improve your sleep in hopes to help you with living your badass life:

  • Be consistent with your sleep schedule- If you have a habit of going to bed at different times most night of the week, you might want to adjust that. Be as consistent as possible with what time you go to sleep for it may help reduce daytime sleepiness.

  • Create a nighttime/bedtime routine- Think about what would help you unwind and get ready to sleep. Be intentional with this process. If a nice warm shower and a warm cup of tea while you read a book helps you unwind, then by all means boo, do you! Wanna do a few stretches or a quick meditation (Register for the Purposeful Healing Series and try the Yoga Nidra meditation)!? Just make it happen!

  • Limit your use of electronics right before bed- Those damn blue lights on those damn electronics are no good, especially before bed. The blue light will keep your brain alert which is no bueno for falling asleep. And don’t get me started on those notifications. Mute those as well to make sure you get uninterrupted rest. Try putting the phone or any other electronics away about 30-60 minutes before bed to set yourself up for success.

  • Move your body consistently- Exercise regularly but not close to bed time. If you are doing a night time workout, do something light like yoga or stretching.

  • Be mindful of your caffeine intake- I know many of you will not like this one but too much caffeine throughout the day may hinder your ability to fall asleep. Caffeine is a stimulant…stimulants make you feel more awake, alert, and/or energetic which is the opposite of what we are trying to do here. Try consuming caffeine about 4-6 hours before going to bed.

  • Set the mood- What does a setting made for sleep look and feel like? Does it have a scent? What’s the temp? Do you hear any sounds? Well I will say spa music is my jam! I put it on my smart device and set a timer for it to shut off an hour to an hour and a half later and I’m out like a light! Works every time!

  • Go to bed when you are tired (or turned on)- The bedroom is for sleeping and sexy time. If you find yourself constantly working in there, paying bills, and anything else you can think of, then your body associates the space with working which is not ideal for rest and relaxation!

  • Limit or avoid napping if you can- If you have to nap then try to take it before 3pm and it shouldn't last more than an hour in length. Naps can make it harder to fall asleep at bedtime.

  • Finish the stress cycle- Work on managing your stress by finishing the cycle. Check out the book Burnout I mentioned earlier to understand what I mean by this AND be on the look out for my takeaways from the book so you can learn how to finish the cycle!

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