We’re now gracing week three of our Stress Awareness Month, and what a month it’s already turned out to be! We can’t stress enough how truly important it is to not stress, and how much better we promise you’ll feel with a few stress management skills under your belt.
Our previous post covered the perils of an exercise-less lifestyle, and this week we’re taking things under the sheets to discuss why exactly rest and sleep are crucial for de-stressing.
Stress is very much a natural emotion. And whilst it’s important to remember that the experience of stress is necessary to help us strive for and achieve goals in our daily lives, too much stress just isn’t healthy. And it can take many forms and manifest from many different sources, such as anxiety, social pressure and during times of unprecedented change.
But above all else, no matter how stressed or overwhelmed you feel, it’s important to know that there’s a fabulous remedy that everyone and anyone can enjoy; and this comes in the form of a good night’s sleep!
But why is sleep so handy for dealing with stress?
Our studies have shown time and time again how a lack of pillow time will render you more emotionally reactive to negative stimuli. Tired you is more sensitive, more impulsive, and much less put together mentally.
Whilst they’re closely interlinked, sorting your sleep should always be the first step towards sorting your stress. Putting on our science hat, we’re going to tell you exactly why that is.
It begins with cortisol, a steroid hormone produced by glands in the kidneys called the adrenal glands. When we sleep, levels of this hormone are lowered back down to healthy levels. But if left to accumulate through sleepless nights, you’ll begin to feel increasingly stressed.
If we go up to the brain, we’ll find a set of neurones called the amygdala, which are responsible for processing emotion. Sleep deprivation keeps these neurones in a state of heightened activity, which in turn will increase anxiety, and hamper your emotional control.
You’ll also feel weaker and less motivated without sleep. Our body is powered by stores of a form of sugar called glycogen, and made tired by growing levels of the hormone adenosine. The perfect balance between these two is thrown off by sleep deprivation, as your body won’t have cleared the excess adenosine, or built up useable or considerable levels of glycogen.
Sleep is hugely restorative to the health of the body and the brain. Eight hours of glorious rest flushes out the toxins plaguing your body, and consolidates the memory; and you can wake up easy knowing that you’ll enjoy the mental and physical capacity to deal with whatever life throws your way that day.
Don’t forget to tune in next week, as for week four of Stress Awareness Month, we’ll be sharing our totally stress-free techniques for living your best life - join us, same time, same place!
To improve both the quality and quantity of your sleep, take a peek inside our dreamiest collection yet by visiting here.