The three pillars of emotional wellbeing: diet, sleep, and exercise.
These are the among the first things that need to be addressed when someone is struggling with feeling down and sad, or stressed and anxious. A quick fix may be desired and some may seek it in the form of antidepressant medication but poor diet, unhealthy sleep habits, and a lack of exercise are three of the most important factors that can contribute to depression, stress, and anxiety.
Over the next three weeks we will be writing about these three pillars of emotional wellbeing to provide you with our top tips to maintain your emotional wellbeing one step at a time. If you want further information about any of these things then please do not hesitate to contact us on 0411 542 624, or via the contacts form (click here) on the website. You can also email directly to firstname.lastname@example.org.
This week, we will begin with sleep. People often struggle to get to sleep and stay asleep, and some struggle with early morning awakening. We all need varying amounts of sleep but the fact of the matter is that we need restful sleep in order to function at our best. The number one tip is to develop a good bedtime routine and try to stick to it. If you generally have a good routine then you may not struggle too much with the odd late night but without a good standard routine to fall back on it can be difficult to recover.
To improve your sleep you might try the following:
- Create a good sleep environment: sleep likes the dark and darkness activates the release of melatonin – the natural sleep hormone that sends us to our slumber. Make sure your room is dark and while you’re there, make it a comfortable temperature – not too hot, not too cold;
- In the hour before bed, avoid screens (T.V., iPads, iPods, laptops, etc.) as they give off light! Try other relaxing and calming activities – have a hot shower or bath, read a book, listen to relaxing music, or do boring tasks such as making lists for the next day. You could also try putting a few drops of lavender oil on your pillow, lighting lavender scented candles, or drinking relaxing herbal teas, such as camomile;
- Avoid doing anything but sleep (or have sex) in your bed. Your body and mind will associate the bed with what you do in it so if you stay awake and read or use a laptop, you will be accustomed to being in bed awake. If you only sleep in bed, then when your head hits the pillow your body and mind will know that it’s time to sleep;
- Avoid caffeine and sugar as much as you can from the early afternoon. If you are really struggling to sleep, cut out caffeine altogether and see if that makes a difference;
- Finally, exercise during the day will help you sleep more soundly at night, so get active!