Can better sleep lower your stress levels
So, can better sleep lower your stress levels? The very simple answer is: "Oh, yes!" I will show you two ways that sleep is impacting you and your stress.
Number one is psychologically and number two is physiological.
In other words, Mind and Body.
The reason sleep can help you digest stress mentally is because of your dreams. Let me point out that all of us are dreaming! Even if you don't remember it, you are dreaming. The difference between those who remember their dreams and those who don't, has to do with when they wake up, and how long their light sleep phase is before waking up.
We all dream, and during that stage of our sleep, our brain is mentally creating a safe space. There it fires everything off that either upset us, that had a great emotion on us, or that we didn't understand. In that safe space, it weaves a story that doesn't necessarily make sense. That is why we have time travel, distance travel and all kinds of weird connections in our dreams. It tries to spin a narrative so that we can digest what has happened in that safe space. This is also very often the reason why you feel so much better the next day when we are very stressed.
Personally, for me, it's when I have a fight with someone, or when I feel upset with a person. I go to bed and very often I can't sleep or have difficulty falling asleep. I'm angry, I'm mad, or I'm upset and hurt. But, I know I will feel so much better the next morning.
Why do I know that it's happening? It's because, even though I don't remember it, in my dreams, I'll play out different scenarios that help me digest all those things that I don't necessarily want to face when I'm awake.
It can also help you logically if you have a logical problem to solve. There have been Nobel prize winners who've had their solution come to them in a dream.
Physiologically, stress is mainly connected to our cortisol hormone. When we are very stressed, our body prioritizes cortisol a bit more than it should. When it does that, other hormones become out of balance.
Look at it as this huge pipe network. When one is prioritized, the others are being a little deregulated. When you sleep, the body is trying to bring everything back into balance. It's shifting gears and opening up a pipe a little more here, winding something down a little less there. That process will help you feel so much better physically the next morning.
Those are the two main ways on how better sleep can lower your stress levels.
My clients come to me all the time and say "Christine, can you help me" or "Christine, it really is true that when I go to sleep, the next day it's so much easier to deal with everything and I just feel so much better."
Now, if you cannot sleep, then that's another story. So, let me know if that's something that's bothering you and we can chat about it.
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