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From Exhausted to Energised: Revamping Your Sleep Routine For Burnout Recovery



It still makes me frustrated that around 80-90% of people tell me that they don’t sleep well.


How can we quantify a good nights sleep?

The ability to fall asleep easily.

The ability to stay asleep without waking throughout the night.

The ability to wake up feeling refreshed.


If you are saying no to any of the above then you should focus on improving your sleep.

Getting good quality sleep is important for everyone, but it is particularly important if you are burned out. It will be nearly impossible to find balance beyond burnout when you are not sleeping well.


I say this knowing that this is not as easy as it looks. Getting good quality sleep can feel like an impossible task when you have years of not sleeping well under your belt. Take it from me, I know, I never used to sleep well. I always woke up throughout the night and just accepted it as, ‘that’s just the way I am.’ I always attributed it to having to go to the toilet. Now on reflection I know that there was no way I had to go to the toilet four times throughout the night and I had the wrong habits and routines around sleep.





Starting to get good quality sleep was actually one of my light bulb moments when I realised that all of the changes that I was making with my diet and lifestyle had begun slotting into place. This was when I really thought, ‘there is no arguing with the biology of the body and how it works when it gets what it needs.’ I would say it was actually one of the main deciding factors of driving my passion to study nutrition and health and to ultimately change my career to help women all around the world to simplify nutrition and lifestyle change to overcome burnout.


When you have had a bad nights sleep you know that feeling the next day, you feel fuzzy, groggy, majorly lacking energy and motivation. It even has an impact on what food choices you make, ultimately making you more susceptible to reach for convenience foods or quick release glucose carbs like white bread- cakes, biscuits, sweets etc.

On the flip side when you have had a good nights sleep you wake up feeling ready to take on the day, motivated, energised and more likely to make better choices with your food.


On a biological level quality sleep allows for improved cardiovascular health, mental health, cognition, memory consolidation, immunity, reproductive health, and hormone regulation. (1)

Hopefully we can realise the benefits of implementing positive behaviours and routines around sleep to improve quantity and quality of sleep.






Let’s look at some habits and routines you can start implementing to improve your sleep to give you a fighting chance at overcoming burnout-


1.       Caffeine Curfew- although I know you love your afternoon caffeine fix of tea or coffee, this is something that can have a big impact on your sleep. Caffeine activates the bodies stress response. This can continue throughout the evening and night time even with an afternoon cuppa. I recommend aiming for a caffeine curfew of 12pm-1pm. Be realistic with this. If you are currently drinking tea or coffee until bed time then start off with a later afternoon cut off like 4pm. Then work towards an earlier cut off.


2.       Disconnect from Screens 1 hour before bed- the blue light we consume through screens massively messes with our circadian rhythm and our bodies sleep/wake cycles. Switching off from your phone, TV, Lap top 1 hour before bed is a game changer for improving sleep. If you find 1 hour difficult start off with 30 minutes then build it up. Some things you can do in this no screen time includes reading, connecting with your family/partner/pet, light chores, skincare routine, word search, journalling, meditation, breath work, the list is endless. Just keep it nice and relaxing, the aim is to wind down.


3.       Increasing Magnesium intake- Magnesium promotes good quality sleep and relaxation of the nervous system. You can increase your intake of magnesium rich foods- wholegrain rice, nuts, seeds and green leafy veggies. You can start having a magnesium salt bath a few times a week- if you don’t have a bath you can do foot soak that has the same therapeutic effects.

Supplementing with Magnesium Bisglycinate can promote better sleep quantity and quality. I do not recommend supplementing until you have checked with a professional for any contraindications for any existing health conditions or medications you are currently taking.


4.       Implement a sleep routine- having a set sleep and wake schedule is important to support circadian rhythm and sleep wake cycles. Aiming to have a set time you go to bed and a set time you wake up allows the body to get into a cycle. There will obviously be circumstances that can affect this like having young children. What I would recommend here is to implement as much of a sleep routine as you possibly can.


5.       Exercise and physical activity- regular movement and exercise has been shown to support good quality sleep. Being mindful to avoid strenuous exercise close to bed time is important to allow for a wind down period.

 

Try choosing one of the tips from above for the next week to support better quality sleep. Once you have one of these habits down then move onto another one. It is better to make small steps in the right direction, than to overwhelm yourself with making too many changes at one time.


Aim to set yourself up for success. Progress not perfection!


If you are ready to commit to making consistent change with your diet and lifestyle, I have got 3 slots available for my 12 week signature programme 'Balance Beyond Burnout'. Book in for a free discovery call today.





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