My second topic of the wellness pyramid that I’m going to be talking about on Periscope is Rest. It’s such a controversial topic. We all want it. We all need it. We just don’t all make it a priority.
When I hear the word rest I think sleep. However the pyramid clearly says rest and they do mean two different things.
Rest: (Noun) An instance or period of relaxing or ceasing to engage in strenuous or stressful activity. (Verb) To cease work or movement in order to relax, refresh oneself, or recover strength.
Sleep is however one way you rest. It is defined as a condition of body and mind such as that which typically recurs for several hours every night, in which the nervous system is relatively inactive, the eyes closed, the postural muscles relaxed, and consciousness practically suspended.
Let’s talk about why we need it.
For some of us it is seriously hard to slow down. In today’s world every thing and every one seems to move at 100 miles per hour. Full speed ahead. To move slow or take a break means you fall behind. We have a to do list for our to do list and rest is no where to be found on either.
It makes you tired. It makes you cranky. It doesn’t make you on top of your game.
If you are like me you try to learn and take in as much information as possible. I’m convinced you wouldn’t be reading this right now if you were one who wants to learn. So this first topic I want to talk about may interest you.
When you sleep, which we decided was one way to rest, you take all you’ve learned that day and you commit it to memory. It’s called memory consolidation.
Consolidation is a neurological process that involves gradually converting information from short-term memory into long-term memory. I’m not going to go into the details on this but you can learn more about it here.
So rest is important because it helps us remember things. It helps us learn. We all need this.
Another reason we need is rest is to support a healthy metabolism. This will help keep us at a healthy weight. Chronic sleep deprivation may cause weight gain by affecting the way our bodies process and store carbohydrates, and by altering levels of hormones that affect our appetite. I actually read that you can be effected by losing only 30 minutes of sleep of night! A lot of us tend to cut our sleep short through the week and hope sleeping in on the weekends will make up for it. Guess what? That just isn’t the case. Maybe you don’t get the recommended 7-8 hours of sleep of night, but if you are not even close I would think about changing your sleeping pattern.
Another big reason you need rest. You Mood. Sleep loss may result in irritability, impatience, inability to concentrate, and moodiness. Think about all the people you come in contact through out the day. I bet you are wondering if they slept last night now, aren’t you.
Too little sleep can also leave you too tired to do the things you like to do. Which again, makes you grumpy and irritable and probably feeling unproductive.
When you are well rested you can fly through that to do list we talked about earlier in no time at all. You can concentrate better when you are rested and you can commit more of what you learned to memory.
The last reason I’m going to give you to rest more is your overall health. Your immune system stays stronger when you are well rested and it can help fight off all the germs and illnesses you come in contact with. Also your heart health. High blood pressure, irregular heartbeats, and high stress levels are things that lack of rest contribute too. So instead of depriving yourself of sleep for weeks at a time then binge sleeping when you catch a cold that ends up turning into pneumonia, lets be proactive and just rest when we should.
I could tell you that all adults need to get 7-8 hours of sleep a night. That isn’t something you haven’t heard before. Heard and dismissed I’m sure while muttering to yourself there was no way you could do that. I know because I was one of those people too.
Guess what, you can. I actually do most nights. If you tell me your body response best for a few hours of sleep I’m going to ask you this one question.
How do you know?
Have you even given it a chance? Not just one night but for an extended period of time?
There are 7 signs you aren’t getting enough rest:
- You are moody!
- You are gaining weight.
- You have become unproductive.
- Your appearance is no longer your best.
- Your libido is lacking.
- You make poor judgement calls.
- You are sleepy during the day.
I will leave you with that. I hope if even if this doesn’t make you want to get 7-8 hours of sleep it at least pushes you to try a little harder to rest more.
Until next time.