Sleep vs. Anxiety: More than just “Beauty” Sleep

So it’s no  secret on this blog that I suffer from Anxiety, I’ve been quite open about that because I feel that it’s an important subject to talk about and needs a Hell of a lot more understanding and compassion from people towards anxiety sufferers. I know that you’ve been told how important Sleep is since you were little, it’s why our Parents made us go to bed by 7 pm as a child and why we were told to always get 7-8 hours solid sleep a night (no that doesn’t include the time it takes you to fall asleep – which is a super long time for some of us, whereas my Husband is asleep and snoring within 3 minutes of turning out the light!). It’s so much more important than just “Beauty Sleep”. We all can have some nights where it takes us longer than usual to fall asleep; we have a big test or a huge Corporate presentation in the morning and so our brains won’t shut off to go to sleep. But if you suffer from Anxiety then that can be more of a Catch 22: you need the sleep to help keep your stress and anxiety levels down BUT your anxiety and stress doesn’t allow you to fall asleep and sleep disorders are especially common among those who suffer from Anxiety and depression. There are ways to ensure that you are getting a good night’s sleep though.

  • Sleep Schedule: Exactly what it sounds like, Go to bed at the same time every night, even on weekends  and then your body gets in to a routine of knowing when it’s time to start winding down and feeling tired.

  • No screen time: This is a really big one, we’re so connected 24/7 to our many devices: smartphones, computers, tablets, Televisions. The blue light that emanates from the screens of all these things actually suppresses the production of melatonin which is what your body needs to get sleepy. Staring at screens in bed, even if you’re just reading a book on your Kindle, can severely interfere with your sleep cycle and cause you to e unable to fall asleep. Also watching exciting or funny TV shows/ movies before bed is going to keep you awake because your brain is awake and fully engaged. All screen time should be shut off at least 2 hours before you are going to switch off the lights to sleep. Try to make your bedroom a screen-free environment and remove TV’s and screen devices so your room becomes a place of relaxation and not one of work/ social media.

  • No caffeine. This is an obvious one, right? It takes approximately 6 hours for just half of the caffeine you consume to be eliminated from your body. So really, that first cup of Joe you drink in the morning should be your only coffee that day. This includes black teas and fizzy pop drinks like Coca Cola too.

  • Invest in a great mattress and pillows. My Mum always used to say to me that you spend a decent amount of money on Shoes and your Mattress because you’ll spend half your life in each. A mattress that is too soft or too hard and doesn’t support your back properly will not give you a good night’s sleep and you’ll have body aches and pains to boot. Same goes for pillows, make sure that your pillows are the best you can get, they’re not that expensive to buy, but your neck NEEDS that support. They also need to be replaced every so often because they’ll loose the support over time/ usage.

Sleep is important, it’s how we function, without good sleep our mental health suffers as well as our physical health. So make sure that you’re treating it with the importance that it deserves.

xoxo Ellie

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49 Comments

  1. April 10, 2017 / 7:36 am

    A-men. I don’t know how people can function off 5 hours. I need at LEAST 7 hours. And that’s a minimum!

  2. April 10, 2017 / 7:49 am

    A sleep schedule is SO important and is what allows me my most restful nights of sleep. Thanks for sharing these tips 🙂

    Rae | Mindful Rambles

  3. April 10, 2017 / 7:50 am

    These are so important! Not being on my phone or laptop right before bed has made a huge difference in how I sleep.

  4. April 10, 2017 / 8:22 am

    This a great post! I definitely follow most of these already as much as I can, some late night blogging often sneaks in before bed time which I know is a big no no other wise I keep caffeine out my diet and head to bed around 10pm almost every night. Some really sound advice here 😊

  5. April 10, 2017 / 9:54 am

    I agree, girl! You’re spot on. I’m so glad my husband and I invested in a brand new mattress and pillows when we got married. Best decision ever.

  6. April 10, 2017 / 10:06 am

    I suffer from anxiety too and all of this is so true. I have had to make so many adjustments! I do yoga and meditate too!

  7. April 10, 2017 / 10:27 am

    I really need to upgrade our mattress so I will sleep like a baby!!!

  8. April 10, 2017 / 10:44 am

    Sleep is so important. My hard working friend some time look at me like I am nuts for having “Working hours”. Even as a blogger its important to maintain boundaries or I will become super anxious! Thanks for saying this and reiterating that rest is good for you!

  9. April 10, 2017 / 10:46 am

    Absolutely! I’m huge on the ‘no screen-time’ rule and it drives my husband nuts, because he could fall asleep to the tv every night. But it keeps me from sleeping; honestly it winds me up and makes me MORE anxious, which makes it even more impossible to sleep!
    I like the idea of investing in a good mattress – that’s what I need to do!

  10. April 10, 2017 / 11:22 am

    These are great ideas. I also get anxiety and I know I don’t sleep enough. I’m going to try some of these tips.

  11. April 10, 2017 / 11:23 am

    Didn’t think of a sleep schedule! I no longer have this issue but if I ever do again, I’ll be sure to try this 🙂

  12. April 10, 2017 / 1:15 pm

    thank you for having the conversation…i believe anxiety is experienced by many but spoken about by very few. i also think the more we speak about it, the better we can manage it. great post and excellent tips!

  13. April 10, 2017 / 1:17 pm

    I have major anxiety problems and the number one thing that my psychiatrist tells me to do is to sleep. Your tips are fantastic.

  14. April 10, 2017 / 3:38 pm

    Totally agree about having a good mattress! This makes a huuuuuge difference!

  15. April 10, 2017 / 3:43 pm

    This is a very inspiring post Ellie! Also your outfit in the rain is the cutest!

  16. April 10, 2017 / 3:52 pm

    No caffeine! Noooo. I totally see the logic here but this is a hard one to cut back on. Everything else makes perfect sense. I need the best mattress and pillow case. Check. No screen time. Check. I get it ALL. I just may need to (internally) compromise on the caffeine part! lol. Great post love.

  17. April 10, 2017 / 3:55 pm

    First, your pictures are absolutely amazing. It can be hard to look cute in the rain and you nailed it! Also, my husband is the same way; hits the pillow and is in a deep sleep seconds later. Me? I am up making a to-do-list in my head trying to turn off my brain haha!

  18. April 10, 2017 / 5:25 pm

    Your mom was more than right. It’s so true, these tips you gave. I never thought about the funny movies but you’re so right. I probably laugh in my sleep every night cus I love funny videos

  19. Brittany_WMSB
    April 10, 2017 / 8:19 pm

    I really need to get better at getting rid of screen time before bed. Everything you’ve said here is spot on. My anxiety levels are definitely higher when I haven’t gotten enough sleep.

  20. Sharon Wu
    April 11, 2017 / 12:41 am

    I couldn’t agree more with investing in good pillows and a mattress for better sleep! In fact, I just upgraded my mattress and can’t wait to get it tomorrow hehehe 🙂 xo, sharon

    http://www.stylelullaby.com
    @stylelullaby

  21. elizabethghekiere
    April 11, 2017 / 9:16 am

    Before I started my new job my sleep schedule was on point and it made me feel so good! Now I work 3 midnights a week and I feel anxious and all chaotic! Sleep schedules are so much more important than we realize!

  22. April 11, 2017 / 9:59 am

    For me ANXIETY is cause of screen… these tips really drag my attention to mange myself properly

  23. Natalie
    April 11, 2017 / 12:16 pm

    thanks for sharing. I can identify with this and my habits are all wrong to promote sleep. I love coffee and I also have babies to care for but my anxiety messes with my sleep all of the time. This was a good read!

  24. April 11, 2017 / 12:31 pm

    Love this! I relate to it so much and have definitely had those nights sitting up thinking about everything that could go wrong.

  25. April 11, 2017 / 1:07 pm

    So funny you said this .. but I was just saying that I think my pillows need to be replaced because I’m not sleeping well! But You shared so many great tips! thanks!

  26. itsahero
    April 11, 2017 / 4:50 pm

    I”m in the same boat. Some nights I just lie awake and wait… and wait and wait and wait. I definitely notice a huge difference if I avoid screentime in my bedroom — both on my phone and the TV.

  27. featherflint
    April 11, 2017 / 6:07 pm

    First – absolutely gorgeous spring photos, I love them! Second – yes, yes, yes! Sleep is SO important to every single thing that we do – so it’s always a balance of getting everything done in a day that you need to, and setting yourself up for a good tomorrow with a full night’s sleep. Hard but vital!

  28. April 11, 2017 / 6:43 pm

    I have to work on not being in front of my computer before bed. I usually use this time to write a post or catch up on blog stuff. I will have to do better in the future, we hear it all the time but there really isn’t enough time in a day. P.S. love the photos, very beautiful!

  29. April 12, 2017 / 12:32 am

    I’m pretty good at all of these….except for screen time. 😛

  30. April 12, 2017 / 5:56 am

    This is such great insight! I always get on my phone before bed and it’s the worst habit!

  31. April 12, 2017 / 6:20 am

    So true! I just got the Nest Easy Breather pillows and they are the BEST i’ve ever had! You can actually adjust the support!

  32. April 12, 2017 / 9:54 am

    Really interesting read! Thank you for continuing to raise awareness about anxiety, as I also am someone suffering from anxiety. I had no idea that it takes 6 hours for caffeine to leave your body! Going to be more careful about what I drink after work now.

  33. April 12, 2017 / 11:42 am

    I love this! I am all about talking about our mental health alllll the time. Thanks for sharing! And great tip about the coffee 😉

  34. April 12, 2017 / 4:02 pm

    I really need to work on improving my sleep! I’m a night owl and I also have a toddler so it’s hard for me to stick to regular schedule!

  35. Lisa
    April 12, 2017 / 5:18 pm

    Yes! Sleep is so important! I suffer from anxiety too and have been given many of the same strategies you mentioned for sleep. My favorite is staying on a solid sleep routine!

  36. April 14, 2017 / 6:00 pm

    That was great information on sleep and glad you shared the connection with how even more important it is with anxiety. I am writing a post on sleep next week and thought this was right on!

  37. April 16, 2017 / 5:27 pm

    Thank you for opening up about this topic we are so glad you shared, sleep is so important and we often forget that!

  38. April 17, 2017 / 10:00 am

    I agree everything you said about sleep! Without a good sleep, our mental and physical function suffer. I will be trying the no screen time at least 2 hours before bed time! Awesome post Ellie. xx

  39. April 17, 2017 / 12:25 pm

    Love how pretty this shoot turned out even in the rain, and that bow back detail is just perfect! I definitely have trouble getting to sleep at night because I’m such a night owl, which messes up my mornings! I need to remember to turn off screens around bedtime for sure, but it’s extra tough as a blogger!

    Chelsea
    Chow Down USA
    Instagram

  40. April 18, 2017 / 6:08 pm

    I love this rainy day look! I agee with these tips. I always try to go to bed around the same time. When I don’t I find it so hard to sleep!!

    http://www.stylebymemory.com

  41. April 19, 2017 / 9:48 am

    I suffer from anxiety also…but I’ve just gotten used to 4 hours of sleep.

  42. brittany
    April 19, 2017 / 1:57 pm

    Definitely agree, a sleep schedule is necessary, love your blog!

  43. Hannah P.
    April 20, 2017 / 5:22 am

    I definitely am in the market for a new mattress. Ours has me up early every morning with a sore back

  44. April 20, 2017 / 7:37 am

    I couldn’t agree more with this post! My sleep quality is just horrible and I often wake up in the middle of the night and end up having an anxiety attack because I’m over tired. I recently changed pillows and it’s helped a lot. I struggle with no screen time the most before bed. I read on my ipad sometimes. I should really look into downloading an app or something that changes the light on my tablet so it doesn’t effect my sleep quality.

  45. April 20, 2017 / 7:42 am

    I struggle with anxiety as well but I’m quite lucky that sleep is pretty much the one thing that it doesn’t affect. I am one of those people who falls asleep in 3 minutes after hitting the pillow and I have no idea why that is, but I am so thankful for it!

    Julia // The Sunday Mode

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