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How Important is Sleep to our Wellbeing?

by | Fri, Oct 14 2022

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How important is good sleep to our mental health? Our physical and mental wellbeing go hand in hand, so getting enough rest is one the most important things we can do. Inadequate sleep can increase the risk of developing depression, anxiety and burn out.

Justin Geange is a mental health and suicide prevention advocate, and coordinator of the ‘Mates in Construction’ program. He is passionate about empowering and educating people on noticing if someone is doing it tough and connecting them with the right help.

Justin recently joined us on Rise & Shine to talk about the importance of sleep, and how vital it is to our overall health and wellbeing. Often many people find that if the quality of their sleep starts to decline, so does their mental health.

How are you sleeping?

‘I see a counsellor once a month as part of my role,’ says Justin. ‘And always the first question is, how are you sleeping? Because we know lack of sleep can cause things to go south, and mental health soon follows after. We get fatigued from so many stressors that can add up to sleepless nights.’

Many people struggle to function without enough sleep. It’s such an important part of any well-being strategy, and Justin says if he’s missed a lot sleep he will try and compensate with an afternoon nap, or a sleep in on the weekend. But that’s not always possible.

‘I’m also not good with some of my screen habits,’ Justin says. ‘I do my best, but I know when my body’s telling me to actually focus a bit more on this. Weekends can be great to catch up on some sleep, but it’s hard to do when you have places to be with the kids. Trying to get that routine and depth into your sleep is so important.’

Have a strategy

Everyone has their own strategies, and it can be really important to ask yourself what you can do differently. What can you continue doing that’s going really well, and remain mindful enough to actually implement it? Looking ahead to what’s coming up on your calendar can be helpful too.

‘We’re creatures of habit,’ says Justin. ‘If we can create good habits around our sleep and understand our busyness levels, that’s important. You never dig a well when you’re thirsty, so it’s important to practise and actively get those routines in place.’

‘Life does go sideways from time to time. But we can try and implement a routine as best we can. It’s not going to be perfect, but if you’ve got a plan, it beats not having one.’

Listen to Justin’s full interview on Rise & Shine below, and for more resources visit our Vision Store.