27% of millennials suffer from inadequate, poor or interrupted sleep
36% of UK adults struggle to get to sleep at least on a weekly basis
2.5 million sleeping pill prescriptions are currently active
69% of lawyers experienced mental ill health in recent 2022 survey.
We live in a world of artificial light, artificial working hours and blue screens while feeling highly stressed, overloaded, worried and anxious. Stress is the biggest contributor to inadequate sleep which often leads to physical and mental breakdown and illness
VOLUNTARY SLEEP DEPRIVATION
We are the only creatures who willingly and deliberately forfeit and sacrifice sleep for work, social life or Netflix – and then when we are dog-tired, we can’t fall asleep or stay asleep.
The number one thing to promote better sleep is calm down your heart rate. Elevated heart rates send signals to the brain that you are still operating in the fight/flight mode and still processing the daily overload and stress. Your system interprets this as an unsafe environment. You are still in a heightened state of alertness which means that you literally can’t relax enough for sound, replenishing sleep. Some may fall asleep immediately due to overwhelming fatigue but staying asleep for the essential 7-9 hours of renewing, replenishing sleep with adequate REM cycles proves impossible.
5 BEST TIPS
- Go out as early as possible for 10-15 minutes a day into natural sunlight (increase this to 2-3 times a day)
- Turn off all blue screens (devices, phones, TV’s) at least an hour before bedtime (better two hours before)
- Don’t have alcohol before bedtime as it messes with timing and quality of the sleep.
- Go to bed an hour earlier, get up 30 minutes earlier for the all-important walk
- Write down 3 things which happened that day which make you feel good – heard the birds singing? Felt the sun on your face? Received a compliment from someone? Seen a good friend? Focus on these before going to sleep
For a clear assessment of what is impacting your sleep and how to change this, email Paula@paularuane.com