Guest Post on changing your sleep routine and how it could help your mental health by Brad Krause
The way we sleep affects so much more than our energy levels. People are finding that by changing their rest habits, they can also boost their mental health. If you suffer from anxiety, depression, or other mood disorder, you may benefit from changing your sleep routine. These changes don’t have to be expensive or time-consuming. You can start small. Such as lowering the temperature in your bedroom a bit. Or replacing your bedding for comfort’s sake. Keep in mind that it’s not just about quantity, it’s also about quality.
Of course, external factors are only part of the problem. If you work long hours, spend much of the day looking at a computer screen, or have a high-stress job, it’s important to take a hard look at your sleep habits and how you can improve them. You may need to focus on your physical health at the same time and give yourself breaks throughout the day.
Keep reading for some ideas on how you can change your sleep habits for the better.
The right environment can have a huge impact on your ability to get good sleep, so think about how you can make some improvements in your bedroom. Finding the right temperature. Reducing the noise level. Or using blackout curtains are just a few simple ways you can make your sleep more restful. And they won’t break the bank.
If you want to take it up a notch, you can also paint the walls a soothing color or invest in a new mattress. Those with back pain will benefit from the latter, but keep in mind that the area of your back that hurts the most will dictate what type of mattress you need. Those with lower back issues should look for a firm one, while upper back pain can be alleviated with a softer mattress.
You probably already know about the benefits of staying active when it comes to your physical health. But it actually affects so many other aspects of your life as well. Creating an exercise routine will help you relieve stress and make the most of the positive chemicals that are released in your brain every time you workout, including dopamine and serotonin. Regular exercise can also increase your body temperature, and when you experience a cooldown period, you can improve your ability to get plenty of good rest.
You may be experiencing a lot of stress during the day that affects your sleep habits and not even realize it. If your job is high-stress, or if you spend a lot of time on the computer or talking on the phone. Make it a point to take some time out of every day for a little quiet. Whether you need to practice meditation or just unplug from your devices for half an hour, find some peace during the day so you can turn off your brain at night and relax.
Spending time outdoors can work wonders for your mental health; studies have shown that going outside several times a week can help alleviate the symptoms of depression. As well as anxiety. Not only that, it can help you get better rest because exposing yourself to sunshine can help reset your internal clock. Whether you want to take a weekend camping trip. Or just go for a walk after dinner each night. Going outside can be beneficial in several ways.
Finding better rest isn’t always easy, but there are several things you can do to make your sleep routine better. Think about what your specific needs are so you can focus on how to address them. Create an easy-to-follow plan that works for you.
Brad created SelfCaring.info to share his own knowledge and the many great resources he has found on his self-care journey