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Have you noticed that tiredness makes it harder to wind down and switch off from your busy day? I know from my research that as a society we really do struggle to switch off, yet we all need to do just that.
It’s frustrating that the more we crave rest, the harder it is to achieve it. I like to think of it being a little bit like when you are trying to remember something, like the name of a film for example.
If you relax and have a bit of patience, the memory will come to you. But if you actively pursue the memory, forcing your brain to connect the dots, the name of that film will just not come! But it might come to you much later on, once you have stopped trying to remember.
Sometimes switching off and winding down feels like this too. It takes a little patience before it comes to you. But if you try to force it, it seems to get further and further away.
Often we find it hard to switch off because we are thinking about everything that happened during the day, and also worrying about what is to come tomorrow. So we effectively chase it away!
It’s one of those self-fulfilling prophecies, and a vicious cycle at the same time. The worry and stress about being tired and unproductive only leads to more tiredness and less productivity.
Switching off is a process, and the benefits are numerous. From a restful nights sleep to a better mood and more focus in the day; when we have recharged ourselves we are much more effective, productive, and happier too.
So what can we do?
Very simply, we need to break the cycle that keeps us switched on all the time. There is an off switch, I promise you. And there are plenty of simple tools that you can employ to help you with this.
Breathing exercises are amazing for this. Yet frustratingly, a lot of people don’t even try them, probably because it sounds overly simple.
I’ve heard objections such as, “I already know how to breathe!”
Okay, but let’s think about the physiology of this. Your heart and lungs work in tandem; so when you breathe slower, your pulse rate comes down too… Are you starting to se where this goes?
Then when we consider the most complicated part of the human form, the mind, we know that body and mind take their cues from each other. A calm mind leads to a more relaxed body, and a more relaxed body leads to a calmer mind. And this is why breathing exercises work so well; it’s a holistic approach.
Rest, recharging and productivity
On Monday, 3rd July I had the privilege of speaking to about 50 people at Interesting Talks London on how to improve their time management, productivity and sleep. It was a great evening and I shared some powerful tools that help people like you achieve that peaceful night’s sleep that comes from being able to switch off from your day.
One of the things we discussed at the talk is being tired when waking up in the morning, and how that tiredness makes you more tired as the day progresses. That vicious cycle again!
The ability to switch off and recharge comes in handy not just when you are getting ready to sleep, but at times when you have lots of things to do and want to be able to prioritise and focus.
Those magical minutes of quietness in your previously racing mind will not only help you to make better decisions, but will also greatly improve your productivity.
I’m sorry to break the shocking news – but the answer to productivity isn’t always coffee! In fact, quite the opposite, it is calmness.
The ability to switch off the mental chatter makes you more aware of what is going on around you. A clearer mind lets you assess your situation, good or bad, and problem-solve effectively.
This sense of satisfaction, knowing that your day has been productive, helps to keep your mind calm, so both rest and sleep come easier. Then you are in the opposite of your previous situation, the vicious cycle of tiredness. That old cycle is broken.
I am always curious to see how others wind down at the end of their day.
So how do you switch off?
Do you have a tool or technique that helps you – or are you in need of one right now? Do leave me a comment or send me an email, I would love to hear from you.
Wishing you sweet dreams and good health!
Ps: If you are interested in learning more tools to help you switch off so you can be more productive, manage your time better and transform your sleep into a refreshing and recharging experience, then reach out, I am here to help.
She immediately put me at ease and gave me lifelong skills to help with my sleep patterns and helped me to overcome my insomnia.
How can I help you to sleep better at night and wake up rested and recharged?