Top 4 Excuses on Not Being Able to Get Enough Sleep
Do you often find yourself yawning during the day, or not able to motivate yourself to get out of bed? If you have troubles in getting a good night’s sleep, you are not alone. Sleep problems can happen to anyone, and is often something that is hard to change.
As someone who has spent the past four years making excuses as to why I don’t sleep enough, I understand how it can make getting work done extremely difficult.
You may realize that you are making the following excuses for not sleeping enough as well, and need a little help to change it so you are fully rested.
Myth #1: I get eight hours of sleep per night, but I am still tired!
You may tell yourself that you get eight hours of sleep, so why do you still feel tired? I know when I first started making excuses for not sleeping enough; I never thought to put the blame on how many hours of sleep I was getting per night. This excuse for not sleeping enough is not valid because you may not realize that people need certain hours of sleep to be well rested at different phases of your life.
For example, infants need as much as 16 hours per night, whereas most adults need a solid 8 hours to feel refreshed. However, this range can be from 5-10 hours, depending on the person. Since we are all slightly different, it is important to find your optimal hours of sleep.
I have found it useful to allow my body to tell me how much sleep it needs. Take a weekend and do not set any alarms. You may be surprised to find how much your body has been craving sleep. Allow your body to reset itself and give it the rest that it needs. Since most of us do have work commitments and have to get up at a certain hour, it is important to find out what your optimal sleep schedule is.
Myth #2: My diet doesn’t have much to do with how I sleep.
Diet can have a huge change on how well we sleep. It may not always be entirely obvious that what you are eating affects you. Any imbalance can cause you trouble; for example, you may be eating too little, eating the wrong foods, or are overeating. I realized the most important meal I was missing out on was breakfast.
Once I began eating a healthy breakfast with protein and carbohydrates, I found my energy levels rising. Eating foods with high sugar could leave you sluggish and unmotivated the rest of the day.
Something I found to be important in helping me sleep longer was dealing with food intolerance. If you are eating foods that your body reacts poorly to, you could see the lack of sleep as one of the symptoms to a larger existing problem. I started out by eliminating certain foods from my diet, until I realized that eating sweets was the problem. If you feel that you need to research this more, you can always go to a doctor who will help you determine if you are allergic to any foods.
Myth #3: Exercising right before I sleep will help me sleep more.
If you feel you are sleeping enough at night but still feel as if you are tired during the day, try including some movement in your day. Exercise is good for your health regardless, but can be the cure to many sleep-related issues. Sometimes when I am really busy, I just take ten minutes out of my day to do some stretches and jumping jacks. I have found that this helps energize me for a few more hours and is better than a cup of coffee.
If you are debating when to exercise, do not assume that exercising right before going to bed will help you fall asleep faster. This is a common myth, as you think you will feel tired and fall asleep faster. However, since exercise often stimulates the heart, brain, and muscles, it can often counteract and make you stay awake. Instead, make a habit of exercising in the afternoon or early evening. If you do this at least three to four times a week, you may begin to see improvements in how you are sleeping and how awake you feel.
Myth #4: The fact that I am not sleeping enough does not have to do with my mental health.
Another issue that can stop you from having a good night’s sleep is everything going on in your head. The lack of sleep and fatigue are often symptoms of depression. Of course, even if you do not have depression but are slightly worried over a small thing, you can often find yourself thinking those thoughts when you are in bed.
Sometimes when I am having troubles sleeping, I force myself into a peaceful mood by playing some soft and relaxing music. I prepare some non-caffeinated tea or warm milk and drink it right before I head to bed.Sometimes, I even take a long hot shower or bath to relax at first.
Make sure that you do not have any distractions next to you: turn off all your lights, put your phone far away from you, etc. When you are in bed, relax every part of your muscle. A good exercise to become settled in your bed is to focus on relaxing small parts of the body, for example, just a foot or just the neck. By isolating each part of the body until they are all settled, you will soon be fully relaxed.
Of course, if you feel this problem is seriously affecting you or if it continues even after you have tried to fix it, go to a specialist and tell your doctor about it at your next visit. Lack of sleep can often be a symptom to larger medical problems. However, do try some of the mentioned changes above. You should be able to find what is stopping you from not sleeping enough, and you can work out a solution.