Coping With Disruptive Sleep
There is no doubt that sleep is just as important for our survival and well-being as food and water. But dealing with disruptive sleep is a reality for even the most well-intentioned.
The best solution to sleep deprivation—whether it’s due to quantity or quality—is to prioritise sleep and investigate how to help yourself get more of it. Check out our article on how to Sleep Well With Our Top 5 Techniques for help.
Until you get your sleeping habits in tip-top shape, here are some recommendations to get you through feeling fatigued:
Eat Healing Foods
Our body does a lot of healing while we sleep—e.g. our digestive system rests and clears itself out, our immune system strengthens, and our brain’s glymphatic system removes toxins and protects itself.
If you’re missing out on the necessary 7-9 hours of healing sleep, make sure you support healing throughout the day with what you eat. Choose fruit and veg rich in powerful antioxidants and precious phytonutrients.
Instead of a vitamin C pill, choose a fresh orange. Load up on berries and green smoothies. Instead of a greasy burger, get a wrap that’s packed with greens and veggies.
Don’t abuse caffeine (and stick to natural sources)
If you need a liquid pick-me-up, avoid energy drinks—these make it easier to overdose on caffeine which can lead to all sorts of nasty problems. Stick to just one or two cups of coffee and keep an eye out for addiction so you can address this quickly.
It’s important not to trick your body into thinking it doesn’t need sleep when it actually needs it the most! If you actually feel tired at a reasonable time of night, you’ll be closer to improving your sleep.
Our brains don’t function as well with less sleep. Sleep deprivation can affect things such as general neural function, memory, concentration, and visual perception. So, while you’re not on your A-game, don’t put yourself under unnecessary pressure at work and risk poor results. Set yourself up for success by taking on only as much as you can currently handle, until you get enough rest.
Be aware of self-regulation
This one’s a no brainer: less sleep equals more angst. We are all quicker to react and be irritable under the strain of fatigue. Remember this as you go throughout those tired days. Use emotional regulation techniques like breath awareness and introspection to prevent lashing out or coming off as unpleasant. Pause, think, and then respond!
Move, but keep it light.
The body will benefit from movement more often than not, but don’t stress it out with HIIT and weight training when you're exhausted. Your body needs to be in good form to recover well from the inflammation and oxidation caused by heavy exercise. Stick to walks, stretching and yoga during this time.
If you’re feeling the strain of poor sleep, good luck on your journey back to the land of good Z’s! Until then, remember these techniques to get you through.