We hate to state the obvious, but sleep is extremely important.
It influences most aspects of your wellbeing and can determine how you live your life. Everyone seems to know this, but it doesn’t stop us from staying up wayyyyy past midnight to binge watch a new Netflix series.
We’re a few weeks into the new year, so we should really try to leave these bad habits all the way back in 2019. Now is the time to start working toward your sleep-related New Year’s Resolutions and become the best possible version of yourself!
Why You Need Sleep
We experience plenty of stress daily, whether it be physical or mental.
After a hard day’s work of receiving and processing information, the brain and body need sleep to recuperate. Muscle restoration, memory retainment, and tissue growth are just a few important processes that happen while we’re in various stages of the sleep cycle.
The soreness you feel after that intense butt-busting workout you did earlier isn’t going to fix itself. Your body needs time to recover from the damage that occurs throughout the day, and an ample amount of rest will allow your body to heal itself. Lack of sleep can lead to obesity, high blood pressure, a compromised immune system, and more.
While sleep isn’t a cure-all for every medical issue that may arise, it can greatly improve how your body deals with adversity.
How Much Sleep Do You Need?
The amount of sleep people need varies depending on age and health.
For the most part, the average adult needs between seven and nine hours of rest. This will provide the body with enough time to internally restore balance. Don’t worry, though — occasionally having more or less than the recommended amount of sleep won’t kill you.
Everyone has lazy days when they feel like they can just sleep the entire day away, but just try not to do this often! Too much sleep can be just as bad as not enough sleep.
Benefits of Sleep
Besides functions like fixing torn muscle or regenerating damaged cells, sleep can affect a few other things, too. Your mood and energy levels can vary based on how much shuteye you got the day before.
Have you ever been around a fussy baby and heard the mom say, “They’re just tired?” Well, just like babies, adults can get a little irate and short-tempered without proper rest.
Sleep deprivation prevents the brain from being able to correctly process emotions, ultimately making people susceptible to negative feelings. Don’t let lack of sleep turn you into a negative Nancy! Get your rest and prevent any unnecessary tense situations.
Another benefit of good sleep is increased energy. Without energy, doing things like working out or even just spending quality time with family can be really difficult.
You don’t want to feel as if you’re falling asleep during a conversation or while lifting weights. Getting good sleep is crucial because it will have you up and ready for anything.
The more energy you have, the more positive you’ll be.
Ways to Get Better Sleep
Put Your Phone Down
Yes, it’s very tempting to check your phone again for Facebook or Instagram notifications. But checking a notification leads to opening your phone, and the next thing you know you’re watching cute dog videos for an hour. We’ve all done it at least once, or forty times —but it isn’t a great habit.
Not only is your phone distracting you from getting sleep, but you’re being exposed to blue light right before bed. Studies have shown that increased exposure to blue light can negatively affect your melatonin levels and ultimately your sleep pattern.
Don’t do that to yourself! It may be hard, but try to put your phone away a few hours before bed. That way, you won’t be tempted to look at it.
Get a New Mattress
This one’s for the people that have rotated their mattresses a thousand times and still have no success getting better sleep!
Although it seems obvious, you’d be surprised how many people overlook the impact a mattress has on sleep. It’s time to let your old mattress go.
Let go of the misshapen, sunken in bed, and buy yourself a new quality mattress. You don’t even need an expensive one! There are many inexpensive mattress options that are still supportive and comfortable.
Old mattresses are not only uncomfortable, but they can cause health problems after a while. Dust mites, for example, love warm, humid environments, making your mattress the perfect home for them. No one wants creepy crawlies on them while they’re sleeping, so do yourself a favor and consider a new mattress.
Clean + Declutter Your Room
Getting to sleep can be hard when there are things strewn all over the room. Instead of focusing on getting some shuteye, you’re focused on that pile of clothes on your desk chair that looks like an alien.
Cleaning your room can really impact the quality of sleep you get because a disorganized room often reflects a disorganized and hectic mind.
Consider throwing out some things you don’t need. You’ll have less clutter and more space in your room. Simple things like vacuuming or hanging your clothes in the closet can really transform your room, and if you’ve already decluttered, cleaning should be easier.
Your Sleep is Important
Sometimes, getting to bed isn’t easy and that’s okay… as long as it isn’t difficult too often.
If you are experiencing consistent sleep issues, then you should try to find the root of the problem, as lack of sleep can seriously hurt you.
Let’s keep up good sleep habits so we can stay happy and healthy!
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