Let’s talk about strategies for managing stress. Over the course of the following posts, we will explore key elements that are pivotal in alleviating stress, anxiety, and feelings of overwhelm. Let’s start with sleep, which can often seem elusive when under stress.
When we talk about a good night's sleep, it's crucial to remember that preparations start the morning of. Waking up to natural light helps establish proper hormone production which can affect stress levels, mood, and energy. Morning light also resets our internal biological clock, or circadian rhythm, signaling to the body when it’s time to wake up and fall asleep.
Adapting our sleep schedule to align more naturally with the day-night cycle can also be beneficial. While modern-day living has detached us from Earth’s natural rhythms in many ways, attempting to re-establish this natural pattern can help improve sleep quality. This means winding down and preparing for bed shortly after it gets dark and certainly when feelings of tiredness creep in.
Diet and lifestyle choices also affect our sleep quality. Consumables like processed foods, sugar, and alcohol can have a disruptive effect on our blood sugar levels, causing tiredness during the day and a surge of energy at bedtime. Although alcohol may initially induce sleepiness, it interferes with the deeper stages of sleep and impedes blood sugar regulation during sleep, resulting in fragmented sleep and daytime grogginess. Therefore, minimizing or eliminating processed foods, sugar, and alcohol consumption can greatly contribute to a more restful night.
Certain herbs, such as lavender, chamomile, and passionflower have calming properties that support relaxation, can help us fall asleep and improve sleep quality. You can enjoy these in the form of herbal teas, essential oils, or even as supplements.
Ensuring your sleep environment is dark and quiet can improve sleep quality by stimulating the production of melatonin, a sleep-regulating hormone. Another effective natural aid in boosting melatonin production includes the consumption of a couple of cups of tart cherry juice during the day.
A good night's sleep is not a luxury; it's a fundamental part of overall health and well-being, both physical and mental. When well-rested, we are less reactionary and better equipped to cope with and recover from stress.
Take Haven offers herbal bath salts and a sleep oil to support you on your journey to a restful night’s sleep.
This article is intended to provide general information and should not be used as a substitute for professional advice. Always consult your healthcare provider or a certified professional before starting any new health practices, including changes to your sleep habits, diet, exercise routine, or use of supplements. Each individual is unique, and what works for one person may not work for another.
Remember, achieving a stress-free life is a journey, not a destination. But with patience, consistency, and the right tools, you can transform stress into a manageable part of a balanced, healthy lifestyle.