sleep

Holidays & Burnout

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Having been hugely blessed by a week paid for and with family in the Portuguese sunshine, I realised just how much I benefit from an Intentional Rest.

I also recognised again how easily burnout could become a real issue.

You see, burnout isn't something you see coming - it silently creeps up on you, until one day, it renders you feeling helpless, disillusioned and completely exhausted.  Just like many of the other lifestyle diseases we regularly refer to!

Before you take a deep breath, please don't worry! I wasn't anywhere near that point of no return, but intentionally taking a step back and resting I can see habits that have crept in that would slowly and surely be pointing me in that general direction. Habits such as working late, not switching off, not being fully present or available for family and friends and wanting to spend too much time on my laptop (I love my laptop - for both work and play!) 

Unhelpful habits such as;

  • Working late or long hours
  • Not properly switching off or relaxing
  • Eating at my desk or on the run
  • Not being fully present or available for family and friends
  • Wanting to spend too much time on my laptop (I love my laptop - for both work and play!) 

But getting away from the tech for a week made me appreciated just how tired I actually was - without really realising it. 

If I'm honest, I was a little unsure about going away to start with,  but what surprised me the most was how quickly and how much I appreciated the quiet and time to zone out.

A dear friend and one of the Intentional Health team had been thoughtful and sent me a colour-in postcard to relax and unwind. You can see what I did in the image above - and I loved creating it! There is no doubt that having a supportive team, who both encouraged me to go away 'laptop free' and really forget all about work for the week, and who also who demonstrated they were more than capable of running the show without me, was a huge undeserved blessing - a real dose of Grace!  (Thank you, team! ;-)

Why not be intentional this summer about some or all of these Helpful habits too;

  • Eat well
  • Sleep
  • Relax & unwind
  • Exercise
  • Connect with others and
  • Take a few short or even extended breaks.

I highly recommend it, and so does our team ;-) 

Next week we'll be at the Creationfest! - Do come and say hello if you are in Cornwall!

Balanced Life or Burnout?

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There is one thing for certain...

We can't have a healthy balanced life and Burnout at the same time.

If we live a healthy balanced life, get sufficient rest and sleep; we avoid burnout.

If we live an unbalanced, unhealthy life, we are heading in the direction of burnout.

None of us wants to live a life that ends up being sick, exhausted and burnt out, but many of us are regularly, unknowingly, making decisions that mean we are heading in that direction.

This week we are hosting 2 FREE 30 minute webinars to explore these areas.

In our first webinar, we are exploring why we burn out and what prevents us from investing in ourselves. We also have a free worksheet to share that helps you with a little self-reflection and identify how at risk you might be of burning out.

Our second webinar will be sharing what we need and how to get a good nights sleep, as well as what difference sleep makes to our health and wellbeing.

1. Balance & Burnout

Join us for our first 30 minute Balance & Burnout webinar this evening 19:30 (BST) using this link: https://app.webinarjam.net/register/35515/970be0a670

(or register now, and we'll send you the replay to watch at your convenience if you can't attend in person tonight)

2. Sleep and Rest.

Join us for our second 30-minute Rest & Sleep webinar on Thursday evening 19:30 (BST) using this link: https://app.webinarjam.net/register/35515/b5e13ddc1c


In all of our webinars, we work through a free accompanying worksheet. If you would like to download these before the webinar you can do that here.

Click here to download the Balance & Burnout worksheet


If you have problems sleeping, we will have a worksheet to help you too and will share the link for this later in the week. Be sure to register for the sleep webinar if you are interested in this worksheet.

https://app.webinarjam.net/register/35515/b5e13ddc1c


See you in the webinars?

Niky, Gareth, Tom & team

5 simple steps to a better night's sleep

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This weekend I’ve been blessed to have my 5-month-old baby nephew 'Freddy' stay over!

While we had a wonderful time, having Freddy stay reminded me of a time when my kids were tiny babies, and I would dread the nights due to the lack of sleep.

I remember being cranky, struggling to focus and concentrate, and forget where I’d put things all the time. I’d also often crave unhealthy sugary drinks and snacks just to get me through the next half an hour and often found that situations where I would normally be able to manage, became all too much. I’d find myself overwhelmed and cry at the silliest of things, and often ended up dreading bedtimes with the anticipation of yet another night of torment.

Thankfully, once my boys got older they learned to love sleep as much as I did, and now as typical teenagers, I struggle to get them up!

Even without a small baby causing sleep disruption, it can be common for many people to struggle with sleep for all sorts of reasons. Whatever the cause, lack of sleep can be very upsetting, disruptive and can lead to all kinds of health problems.

These can include anything from being more likely to catch a cold or gain a little extra weight, to increased risk of developing heart disease obesity and type 2 diabetes.

To be at our best in the day, most average adults should get around seven to nine hours of quality sleep every night, but studies show that less than half of us manage this!

With today's technology and fast-paced, 'always connected' culture, we need to be just as intentional about our sleep hygiene as we are with our personal or food hygiene!

Here are 5 of the things that my family are trying, to ensure better sleep hygiene

1) Getting off screens

Turning off altogether, or at least removing, the 'bright blue light' displayed on our devices with screens using apps like Flux or Nightshift at least an hour before bed. Studies show reducing exposure to this blue light at the same time as dusk, stimulates our natural bodies rhythm to sleep at nightfall.

2) Get some exercise.

Being physically active always helps us with a good night sleep, especially if we have had a stressful day or are feeling mentally tired. Physical exertion helps us get a good nights sleep.

3) Keeping screens and iPads out of the bedroom.

We have a charging station set up in the lounge to avoid phones and iPads being taken into the bedroom, thus avoiding the temptation to check them if we wake momentarily in the night. My husband even bought us an old-fashioned alarm clock (with no tick-tocking)!

Alarm clock with no tick tock

4) Avoiding caffeinated drinks.

We cut down on drinks with the stimulant caffeine in the afternoon and evening to ensure no traces are left while we are trying to get to sleep.

5) Keeping the room dark with proper blackout blinds where possible.

Complete blackout is something we are still working on. The window next to our bed has a blackout blind, but we need to order bespoke blinds for the other window, and I haven’t got round to it.

We do however really notice and appreciate the difference a dark room makes every time we go and stay somewhere with real blackout blinds.

Note to self: be more intentional about ordering the blinds!

I’ll start now ... after a quick nap! ;-) …

Til next week, Sleep well!

Niky


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Also, if anyone is attending the Methodist 'Connecting Disciples 2017' Conference this week, then please come and say hello! I will be delivering an Intentional Health based workshop on Tuesday at 11:30 am in the Barclay Hall!

Please remember to help others be more intentional about their health and wellbeing by sharing this post :)

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