Sleep is an essential part of everyone’s life; without it we cannot function. However, someone with high emotions, a lot on their mind or stress will struggle to get a good night’s sleep. Racing thoughts, anxiety and stress can keep your mind active, when it needs to be relaxed to send you to sleep — you cannot sleep if you’re moving and keeping your body active and it is the same principle for your mind.
Although it is quite normal to have the occasional bad night, longer stretches of regular trouble sleeping impact your physical and mental health. This is called insomnia. Insomnia can lead to extreme tiredness and make everyday, manageable tasks seem a lot harder.
Long-term sleep problems can lead you to:
- feel your relationships are suffering
- struggle to maintain a social life
- have a hard time doing everyday tasks
- feel hungrier and snack more
- feel tired during the day
Tips to help sleep
Get into a regular sleeping pattern
Setting a bedtime or going to bed when you feel tired and waking up at the same time most days, as well as avoiding napping where possible, can help to get you into a regular sleeping pattern.
Create a restful environment
Dark, quiet and cool environments are the best environments to help you fall asleep, and stay sleeping.
Being active can help you sleep better. After working out or doing some exercise during the day, your body will become more tired at the end of the day which will help you get to sleep.
If you’re lying awake unable to sleep, trying to force it usually ends up not helping at all. Get up and do something relaxing such as reading a book or meditating for a while and then return to bed when you feel more tired.
Write down your worries
If you’re lying in bed, thoughts racing and unable to sleep, write down your worries. This can actually help put your mind at ease.
Reduce the amount of ‘pick me ups’
Caffeine and alcohol can stop you from falling asleep and prevent you from into a deep sleep. Try and cut down the amount of alcohol and avoid caffeine close to bedtime.