By Mama Disrupt®
Ever feel like life’s turned into a non-stop treadmill? With our phones pinging away and the whirlwind of tasks that come with juggling motherhood, work, and, well, just life—it’s no wonder our brains are crying out for a breather. Welcome to the modern world, where the pace is mad, and our brains? Well, they’re in desperate need of a nap!
But if you think sleep’s just about feeling refreshed for the school run or not yawning during that Zoom meeting, think again. It’s a lifeline for our brains.
“The modern world is becoming increasingly fast-paced, stressed and distracted,”says Professor Shantha Rajaratnam, Chair of the Sleep Health Foundation.
“Healthy sleep is critical and an important part of protecting our brain health in modern society. The discovery 40 years ago that melatonin synchronises the central circadian clock has led to profound changes in the way circadian disorders are managed.”
Because this week is Sleep Health Week (25 September – 1 October) and the theme is Better Sleep Better Health, we’re looking at the link between sleep and our mental wellness.
“LET’S CHAMPION OUR SLEEP AND WAKE UP READY TO CONQUER (OR AT LEAST COPE WITH) WHATEVER THE DAY THROWS OUR WAY!”
Why’s Sleep So Blinking Important, Anyway?
Sleep’s when our brains get busy with a bit of housekeeping. It files away memories, making sure we don’t forget where we left our keys or that hilarious thing our little one said.
Keeping a Lid on It
Ever had a snappy day after a restless night? Sleep’s a bit like an emotional reset button. It helps us keep our cool and not sweat the small stuff.
Brain’s Spring Clean
Our brains, nifty as they are, have a built-in cleaner—the glymphatic system. Mostly working while we’re asleep, it’s like a little hoover that tidies away the brainy clutter.
All right, So How Do We Modern Mums Get More Zzzs?
1. Stick to a routine
We do it for the kiddos, why not us? Heading to bed and rising at roughly the same time (yes, even on weekends) helps set our body clocks.
2. Switch Off the Screens
That cheeky late-night scroll? Not great for sleep. The blue light from our gadgets messes with our sleep hormones. Maybe read a book or have a natter instead?
3. Watch the Cuppa
Love a brew or a sneaky bit of choc? Just keep an eye on the caffeine and sugar, especially in the evening. Perhaps switch to a calming herbal tea like camomile?
4. Make Your Bedroom Cosy
Think comfy mattress, dark curtains, and maybe a white noise machine if the neighbour’s dog won’t quit.
5. Share the Load
Mums can be martyrs, but there’s no trophy for exhaustion. If you’ve got a partner, divvy up the nighttime duties. If not, maybe rope in a mate or family now and again?
6. Chill Out
A bit of deep breathing, some relaxing tunes, or a short meditation can work wonders before bed.
7. Short and Sweet Naps
Power naps? Brilliant. But avoid super-long or late ones, or you’ll be counting sheep till dawn.
8. Get Moving
A brisk walk or a dance-off with the little ones can help with sleep. Just avoid the really energetic stuff right before bed.
9. Get the Kids On Board
As they grow, get the kiddos to understand that mum needs her sleep too. They might just surprise you by letting you have a lie-in!
10. When in Doubt, Seek Help
If sleep’s eluding you despite your best efforts, maybe have a chat with a professional. It’s what they’re there for!
So, to all you fab mums out there navigating the mayhem of modern life, remember that giving yourself a good night’s sleep isn’t being lazy—it’s being smart. And it’s not just for you. It’s for those cheeky monkeys who rely on you, and the countless hats you wear daily.
Go on, let’s champion our sleep and wake up ready to conquer (or at least cope with) whatever the day throws our way!
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