Stress is, unfortunately, a part of life. It can have a wide array of impacts on life, from personal relationships through to our general outlook. However, the consequences of stress on sleep have until recently been ignored. Only now are sleep experts starting to study how being stressed can impact on the quality and quantity of sleep an individual gets and their findings are concerning.
Sleep is an unusual state. The less you think about the process the more successful you will be. However, at the same time you cannot be too focused on anything else. You cannot, for instance, be stressing about something that you need to do at work tomorrow and hope to calmly drift off. Sleep requires the mind to be relatively clear, free from concern, which as many people will point out, is easier said than done. When you are stressed it is difficult to erase it unless you fix the cause of the stress, which is not always possible. Yet still everyone needs to sleep.
Night time stress is one of the leading causes of degradation of sleep quality and quantity. A number of surveys have found that almost everyone has found at some point or another that stress has impacted on their sleep. Indeed many claim that it effects them on a regular basis.
Going to bed stressed, distracted or even panicking, is terrible for your sleep routine. Trying to drift off when your mind is racing, busy on a problem, is extremely difficult. Being stressed not only makes the process of getting to sleep more difficult but it can also degrade the quality of sleep. The major problem is that this will compound. Not getting enough sleep exacerbates the stress levels and increased stress makes it even harder to get to sleep, meaning that the problem can snowball.
The best thing anyone struggling with stress can do, aside from working through the causes of the stress, is learn how to put up a firewall between them and their stress at night when they need to sleep. There are some great relaxation techniques that can help which involve concentrating on a reasonably mindless task. This takes the mind away from stress and gives it something easy to focus on. By controlling the effects stress has on your sleeping process, you can help limit the consequences it has on your life.
Stress can impact both the quantity and quality of your sleep and the problem is cyclical, meaning that the less sleep you get the more stressed you become and vice versa. Try to build a firewall between you and your stress when you are going to sleep using relaxation methods of take your mind off your problems.
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