The effects of sleep on your mental health.
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The original theme for this years #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek (before Covid-19) was Sleep. I thought it was still a good topic to cover, and whilst kindness is a great topic, the effects of sleep on your mental health is also an important topic to cover. So I thought I’d dedicate one of my posts this week to sleep.

I’m the first person to hold my hands up and say that I either don’t sleep enough, or struggle with a “sleep routine”. It’s one of those things since I was a child I’ve struggled with. There’s an element of #FOMO attached to my sleep pattern (fear of missing out), and then there’s the workaholic in me that interrupts my pattern.

I do try and keep a sleep pattern, but this lockdown and out of work situation a lot of us are in at the minute has made it difficult to maintain a pattern. I’m currently writing this at half past 11 at night. If I were working, I’d be in bed by now.

What are the benefits of a good sleep pattern?

So according to a few sources (BUPA & MIND) sleep plays a vital part of keeping us both mentally and physically happy. Focusing on mental health, the benefits could be things like:

  • Reduced stress levels
  • Help with out emotional well-being
  • Reduced anxiety
  • A reduction in our negative thoughts.

Let’s be honest, I’m no psychologist or sleep pattern expert, so I can only speak from my own personal experiences. Good job I write a blog…

I know that when I have a bad nights sleep, or if my sleeping pattern goes off, my mental health takes a turn. I find my anxiety spikes first, but it’s never long before my depression kicks back in, which is why I make a conscious effort to keep to some sort of pattern.

What do I do?

It doesn’t have to be a perfect pattern, let’s face it. Life get’s in the way, things happen, but there’s a few things I make sure I do before going to bed which I think have helped.

1. Stop looking at my phone at least half an hour before.

2. I spend 5 minutes in silence.

3. I try to reflect positively on my day

4. Invested in blackout curtains (I have a streetlight directly outside my bedroom window)

5. I try to aim for 7-8 hours a night

These few things I’ve found have helped my sleep. I don’t have a set time I go to bed, just because of work commitments but whether it’s 9pm or midnight, I try to keep to these 5 things.

I understand it’s easier said than done sometimes but developing some sort of pattern really does help with your sleep cycle, and there’s no better feeling to me than having a really good nights rest.

Let me know if you’ve got any tips to help build a pattern or sleep routine, it’d be really good to hear from other people and what you do.

Take care, stay safe. (and get a good nights sleep)

James. aka Anothermaleblogger

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This Post Has 11 Comments

  1. I always forget how linked sleep and mental health are!

    Such a great post, thank you – it was a good read x

    p.s. I WISH I could get 7 hours sleep a night! It’s my goal haha

    1. I’m not always successful… I got none last night as my anxiety spiked and managed an hours nap before. Hopefully I’ll catch up a little bit tonight. x Thanks for the comment.

  2. Nikki O

    I’m actually really struggling with my sleep pattern at the moment, which kind of explains why my energy has been so low. I am trying to go to bed and shut off everything by 11pm cause during this lockdown I have been up till almost 3am LOL. Jogging in the evening has been helping me with my sleep and my eating as well.

    1. I’m glad you’ve found something that seems to be helping. Hopefully we’ll all manage to fix our patterns during this time, but it’s definitely been a difficult time. x

  3. Ann-Marie

    Good post! Sleep is so important for your mental health.

  4. Dave

    This is great. I published an article on sleep at the weekend but only touched on its impact on mental health. Thanks for going more in depth!

  5. Josh Raimonde

    I have been having trouble sleeping lately with everything going on, and have tried a bunch of different things to various degrees of success. One thing you mentioned that I somehow hadn’t thought of was the blackout curtains. My bedroom is in back of the house, so there are no streetlights, but I’ve woken up at 3 in the morning and thought it was time to get up because sometimes the moon can be really bright. I’ve started putting my phone across the room, but should also stop checking it right before bed too. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Amman Ali

    What is it called??

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