The power of #sleep on #mentalhealth #wellbeing #selfcare & #resilience for #stress & #mentalillness #lifestyleblog 

Gooood Morning,

I write with a mighty yawn! I used to catch myself yawning all the time. I’m much better now although I do get times where it feels like (another one coming now!) it’s non stop. 

I’ve been called out in a large meeting before at work for yawning. “Am I keeping you up?” Management said. Although a joke, I was struggling with anxiety and paranoia at the time and I felt embarrassed.    It grated on me a fair bit. 

I’ve had all those tests anaemia etc for low iron levels but I’m clear from that. 

Sleep is often underrated. Memes of ‘Go Hard or Go Home’ styles can make you feel like you’re not young and cool if you can’t handle ‘it’ and that sleep is over rated. 

In this blog I’m not referring to that type of sleep and energy though. I’m writing about our weekly routines around work/education/lifestyles. 

Recently, I made a brave (likely slightly ‘bonkers’ in a nice sense as the School for Scoial Entrepreuners put it! SSE) decision to embark on a competitive course I secured a place on and apply for and take a grant I won to run a social impact project. Let’s pause for a second and remember I live with ongoing mental health problems and question in my lapses and relapses whether I can cope working full time and manage my issues alone. (I have. To this date. Go me! 💪🏻 But..I struggle through when I’m ill). 

This is the thing though…it’s exactly what #MHAW17 themed this years mental health awareness week campaign on – Surviving or Thriving. When I’m well and thriving, just try and stop me. Ideas, integrity, innovation, inspiration (all the I’s it seems!). When I’m ‘struggling’ or just surviving, that gets turned on it’s head. Upside down. In the gutter. Overwhelmed, over stretched, over stressed and feeling like it’s all…’over.’ How sad is that? Not to mention exhausting. Feeling like I won’t be able to be ambitious passionate me anymore knowing when I’m well that I can, I do, I will, I show and much more.

So anyway, here I am (although this post doesn’t just refer to here and now) juggling away these things that I’ve bought about myself and I’m writing this in ‘well’ state. One thing I was this week (nothing to do with mental health problems) was stressed.

I could really tell the difference between stress and and mental health issues because stress is more natural. We all experience it and it’s common with every day pressures. Feeling low and nervous (not depressed and anxious in the clinical sense) are also common. Me, I was stressed. Tired too…here’s when she finally gets to the point-you’re probably wondering, phewf!

The problem lies where we’ve become so robotically inclined to just over do, over commit, work later, sleep later, eat later , get up later…(or earlier having not slept well), and it will all be just that bit too late won’t it? 

Food and sleep. Basic neccessities to keep ourselves well. Yet the latter, well, we don’t do it. We don’t prioritise it for FOMO fear of missing out, fear of letting down others and fear of falling behind. Guilty as charged. 

I have been absolutely knackered this week. Between this week and last week I had 1 night where I generally thought I’m going to be (physically) unwell and 1 where I thought (today) I would wake up even more, if possible, tired. BUT…on both accounts, guess what simple remedy cured all? A Good Night Sleep. I went to bed that bit earlier on both evenings and I feel different. Yes, stresses and pressures may still be there I put basic self care in place.

Give yourself permission to rest. You can pour from an empty cup. 

Have a chilled out weekend where possible fellow sleepy souls. You deserve it. Or nap! Don’t get me started on napping… mmmmm gotta love a nap! How old am I again? WHO CARES!!!

Love Abs x 💙

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