Sleep, happiness and the ripple effect

The mood of happiness comes with feelings of satisfaction, achievement, positivity, pleasure, contentment, health and wellbeing. It is experienced both from within and as a result of interaction with other people. Feeling happy and in a good mood should come naturally and we deserve to feel this way.

Sleep problems

It’s well known that when you don’t sleep well you don’t function well the next day. After a bad night’s sleep, you experience a lack of energy, concentration, patience and motivation. There is no sign above your head saying ‘Warning, I had a bad sleep, approach with care’.

The way you feel sends forth feelings to your connections with other people. Sleep problems affect these connections and cause a ripple effect, that ultimately comes back to you.

Your experiencing sleep problems if you are:

• Not able to get to sleep within 30 minutes or less

• Not able to sleep soundly through the night with no more than one awakening

• Unable to drift back to sleep within 20 minutes if you do wake

How bad sleep impacts your life

The impact on your life and those around you can be significant because we may not interact with others the way we normally would. This means they respond to your behaviour and you respond to them, adding your interpretation of their intention and behaviour.

Situations like these take place:

• You miss out on being involved in pleasurable activities or interactions with others due to lack of energy

• People misunderstand, misjudge or avoid you because you’re not as patient, involved or present

• Your decision-making process is affected by brain fog

• Your positive and motivated outlook is reduced and you don’t strive to achieve as you normally do. This is when your focus narrows and its hard to see opportunities, only problems.

• Your sex drive is reduced

• Your body suffers because you don’t want to exercise due to fatigue

• Your health suffers because eating good food is no longer satisfying. Energy levels need to be increased quickly with carbohydrate, caffeine or a sugar fix

• Your body releases insulin as a result of sleep deprivation, which leads to increased fat storage and a higher risk of type 2 diabetes.

If you become less involved in life and contribute less then there is often little sense of achievement or inclusion. Human life is about interactions with others and sleep problems affect these interactions. Sleep problems temporarily change your behaviour and your body. It can make you feel less wanted and less successful. It affects your immune system, which ultimately affects your health. We all know that your health is everything, you need it to function, feel good, move around and work. Studies have also shown a clear link between lack of sleep and depression.

How does quality sleep affect me?

The reason that quality sleep is important is that while you sleep your body carries out essential maintenance to keep you functioning at your best. It does this by moveing through the sleep cycle and your brain waves change from Beta to Alpha to Theta, then Delta and finally REM sleep. This cycle repeats itself 5 or 6 times throughout the night. This means you relax, drift off and your body restores itself physically and mentally, including repairing heart vessels and regulating hormones. You process information, learn and add experiences to your long-term memory. Most importantly your body recharges itself so that the next day you have energy and feel rested and ready to start the day. There is so much happening while you sleep and it is all carried out by your subconscious mind. Studies show that experiencing more Alpha brain wave is helpful at reducing anxiety and depression.

Can I ever return to quality sleep?

Whether your sleep problems are caused by a known or unknown reason and whether it is from the past, present or caused by a fear of the future together we can resolve the issues that are preventing quality sleep.

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