SIMPLE FIXES FOR COMMON SLEEP PROBLEMS

Have you ever had one of those nights where you just can’t fall asleep, no matter how tired you are? Or, what about when the quality of your sleep is so poor, it feels like you never even shut your eyes? Well, there’s help. Here are a few simple fixes for the three most common sleep problems, from CNN.

• The first sleep problem: night waking. This is when you fall asleep normally but a few hours later you’re wide awake. There are a couple of solutions here. First, look into Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to learn some relaxation techniques. You can find a Behavioral Therapist at NACBT.org. The easiest fix is just taking that alarm clock with the bright red numbers off your nightstand. Even a small amount of brightness is strong enough to enter your retina when your eyes are closed, and that sends a signal to your brain that upsets your internal clock and tells you it’s time to be awake. An eight-week study in Finland found that sleep quality improved after just six days without an illuminated alarm clock.

• Next sleep problem is getting up too early. This is when you wake up at four in the morning and are exhausted by dinner time. It can be a vicious cycle, but breaking it is simple. Decide on a morning wake up time, then count backwards eight hours to get your bedtime. Then stick to those times like glue, even on weekends! Getting your body on a regular sleep schedule will increase your energy and make you feel more alert!

• Third common sleep problem: constant worrying. You feel like you just can’t turn your brain off. Stress and insomnia are related, and scientists believe that, in insomniacs, the area of the brain that controls stress is more active at night. So, you need to calm your brain down. Try distracting yourself by concentrating on your breathing, as you do this, your mind calms and you fall asleep.

… If you’re having trouble sleeping on a regular basis, you might have a serious sleep disorder like sleep apnea. So, contact your doctor and describe your symptoms. Know that you’re not alone. According to the National Sleep Foundation about 30 million people are suffering with you!

A Big Oops!

At a clothing store, a young sales clerk — her first day on the job — was determined to give customers her unvarnished opinion. One day, when a man emerged from a fitting room, the sales clerk took one look at him and shook her head. “No, no,” she said. “Those jeans look terrible on you. I’ll go get you another pair.” As she walked away she heard the customer mumble, “I was trying on the shirt.”

Phobias

Maryann gave away tickets to the Hi-4H Haunted House this week. Listeners had to guess the #1 Phobia. (Winners also guessed # 10 & #5)
Just in case you want the to know the complete list, here it is:

TOP TEN REAL PHOBIAS

10. Dentist

9. Dogs

8. Flying

7. Thunder and lightning

6. The dark

5. Heights

4. Other people, or social phobia

3. Spaces. In other words, any place we fear of escape might be difficult: elevators, sporting events, bridges, etc.

2. Spiders

1. Snakes

HOW TO LIFT THE STRESS OUT OF YOUR MORNING

Another morning. Another day begins. You get up too early, stumble into the shower and in somewhat of a haze try to get things together and get work or school on time. But by applying a few simple tips you can make not only the morning but the whole day more relaxed and smooth.

Plan the night before
Choose the 2-3 most important tasks and put them on a to-do list. By choosing just the most important stuff instead of a dozen things you are less likely to start procrastinating or realize at the end of the day that you filled it with less important tasks.

Pack your bag the night before
This very simple habit can alleviate quite a bit of stress in the morning. If you pack your bag before you go to bed then you don’t have to run around in your house half panicked tomorrow while looking for your books or some important papers.

Make your lunch the night before
Pack the leftovers of your dinner in a container and put it in the fridge. Just don’t forget to put it in your bag in the morning. You may even want make an extra serving so you can quickly heat up dinner when you get home from work/school. Doing this the night before will save you a bit of time and possibly a bit of money.

Don’s forget to just relax
You can’t get much done if you never get any rest and revitalization. Well, you can for a while but soon you’ll start to feel run down, stressed out and fill up with all kinds of negative emotions pretty much all the time. So take some time to just relax. Meditate in one way or another. Take a warm bath. Take a walk in the woods. Listen to relaxing music. Have some fun with friends and/or family. Release pressure, stress and tension that can come from a hard day’s work so you don’t carry all of that into the following morning.

Get enough sleep
It’s tempting to stay up a bit longer and let the “morning-you” take care of the problems – I do for example become more likely to revert to old behavior patterns such as negativity and being easily stressed – that come from lack of sleep. But be good to yourself at least some days during the week. Go to bed a bit earlier and catch up on your sleep.

Use a morning routine
What you do early in the day often sets the context for your day. We have a tendency to want to be consistent with what we have done before. So if you have the time – or are willing to get up a few minutes earlier – then a nice morning routine can be a great way to start a day. I do for example get up and drink a glass of water, pull the blinds from my windows to let in the sun, eat breakfast and drink a cup of green tea, brush my teeth, make my bed and declutter for a few minutes. Read more about my morning routine and the routines of many of the readers right here.

Keep everything in its place
If everything has its own place then it is whole lot easier to keep your home reasonably ordered and decluttered from day to day. And to find the keys as you are heading out the door.

Here are some things you maybe didn’t know yesterday.

Maryann gives her input in italics after each.

*Research indicates plants grow healthier when they are stroked.
(and kids grow healther when they are cuddled!)
 
*During your lifetime, you grow about 590 miles of hair.
(you notice I said YOU, because I CERTAINLY don’t!! My hair has been the same length for 45 years!)
 
*Cleopatra married two of her brothers
(This gives the term:sibling rivalry, a whole NEW twist.)
 
*A passionate kiss will burn up to 6.4 calories per minute
(Who needs the gym, this sounds like a lot more fun!!)