Fatigued to Fabulous!
Updated: Jan 29, 2021
I tend to get a lot of questions about sleep.
Fatigue is serious and the chronic fatigue associated with autoimmune conditions can be relentless. Unless you have experienced it yourself you cant believe how bad it is.
However, I have learnt that there are things we can do to increase our energy and reduce fatigue.
One of those is to improve our sleep.
I had to learn how to sleep better after telling myself (for most of my life) that I was a "bad sleeper".
It's only been in the last few years that I have learnt how amazing sleep is and how vital it is for our health, our mood and even our weight!
There are so many tweaks you can make to your routine to start to get a great nights sleep, even a few small adjustments could give you surprising results. Try the following, but remember, consistency is key, it can take time for new habits to establish and results to be seen. Don't get disheartened if you start well then have a bad night, you will see the improvements again:
What time should I sleep?
The sleep we get between 9pm and midnight is more beneficial than midnight - 5am. This is due to various physical processes taking place in the body and brain to remove toxins, broken DNA and produce killer T-Cells which are vital for our immune system and overall health. Try getting to bed slightly earlier than usual to make the most of this window of time. A good method is to go to bed 15 minutes earlier on night one, then another 15 minutes earlier on night three and carry on gradually bringing bedtime forward until you are at a good place for you.
How do I start a better routine?
Go to bed and get up the same each day, even at weekends and holidays (while you are in this ‘learning’ phase). Your body likes routine and this will support your Circadian Rhythm (your sleep/wake cycle) which in turn will make it less likely for you to wake up during the night.
How much sleep do I need?
Less than 8 hours sleep per night is considered sleep deprivation so ensure you are in bed early enough to get this magical amount of sleep in your life. Especially taking into account any spells of being awake during the night (if this is an issue for you).
How can I improve my bedroom? Your bedroom should be your sanctuary. Keep it clean and tidy and quiet and dark at bedtime. Don't watch TV, look at phones or work in there. Let your body and mind know that when you walk into this room it is time to relax, forget the worries of your day and be ready for sleep.
What about Wifi and Phones? This was a biggy for me! Switch off Wi-fi, put phones on airplane mode (or power down). Our bodies are aware of the signals emitting from these devices and it absolutely interferes with sleep. On the nights that I forget to do this I have a bad nights sleep, so I highly recommend taking this quick and simple step.
How do I relax? There are lots of ideas on how to relax before bed, journaling, breathwork, mindfulness, meditation, a gentle walk, no TV, reading a book.....the list goes on. Think of something that makes you happy and relaxed and helps you switch off from your busy day and busy mind. One of my favourites is EFT (Tapping) and a couple of minutes of this technique sees me ready for a great nights sleep.
This is just a few suggestions and there are plenty more things you can slot into your day to get you sleeping like a baby.
If sleep is a struggle for you get in touch, it doesn't have to be this way.