Posts Tagged 'mind'

Sweet dreams – the importance of sleep

We’ve all heard it before: sleep is important for your health and well-being. But for some reason, sleep seems to be one of the first things to take a back burner when life gets crazy. You just have to finish grading those papers, answering those emails, or maybe even just watching one more episode of your latest Netflix craze. I will admit that I too do these things. But I will also admit that because of that, I learned a hard lesson about putting my health and well-being before anything else. My freshman year of college, there was one week where EVERYTHING was due. I stayed up late working on my homework the whole week. But, that’s when classes got even more difficult because I got the flu. I was miserable the whole next week and had to miss a few classes. Bottom line is, is staying up late to finish something really worth it if it will later affect the same thing?

My answer is no. From then on, I have always completed as much homework as I possibly could within a reasonable time. I would rather take extra time on a project than turn it in in my sleep-deprived state, because it probably wasn’t done to the best of my abilities in the first place. Anything you have to do will still be there in the morning. My best tip is to learn how to practice good time management skills so you can get the beauty rest you really need.

If my personal story doesn’t convince you, then maybe some science will. According to the National Institutes of Health, a consistent loss of sleep can lead to struggling with memory, concentration, and slowed reaction time. These things are detrimental to personal and professional lives, not to mention getting into the driver’s seat of a car, or other dangerous activities. Sleep deprivation can increase the risk of accidents in the car, or just in everyday life tasks. These are only the beginning effects that sleep loss has on the body. Over time, prolonged sleep loss can lead to hostility, alcohol use, use of medications to stay awake, weight problems, poor decision making, and more

So really, just put down the work, the book, or the remote and get some shut eye. You will be a happier, healthier person both psychologically, and physiologically. And if you are having trouble sleeping all the time, you aren’t alone. There are over 40 million Americans suffering from over 70 different sleep disorders, so don’t be afraid to seek help from a doctor. Wishing you sweet dreams and a good night’s rest.

Alicia Diedrich

Me, myself and mind

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As an active person, sometimes the easiest thing you do each day is go to the gym or get your workout in. For me, this is just part of the routine; I usually have a worse day if I miss getting my daily pumping of iron. Most people don’t realize that there is another side to living a healthy lifestyle – intellectual wellness.

Just as important as it is to be physically fit, being mentally fit is a staple to a well life. Intellectual wellness stems from just feeling good, channeling curiosity and feeding creativity. Some vague terms, yeah? It can be hard to know what is actually curbing boredom or what is stimulating your brain cells. In all, anything that makes you really think is doing wonders for your intellectual wellbeing.

If you’re trapped at a desk all day or stuck in a job where you just go through the motions each day, try a few of these mind-pumping ideas in order to get the nerve juices flowing and keep your brain healthy and strong, just like your body.

 

Coloring – That’s kindergarten stuff, Sarah. No, friends! It is not. Mandala and destress coloring of really intricate pictures works as an awesome mind-winddown after a long day of intense, brain heavy work. Focusing on the hues and the lines is a sweet break after a long day of words and numbers. You can find oodles of adult stress-free coloring books in book stores.

Sudoku – Think you’ve had enough of numbers? Think again. Sudoku is a solid way to let numbers become a game. This helps the mind problem solve on a simple level. By perfecting the steps toward reaching the right answer of the sudoku puzzle, your brain adapts some thinking methods for real-life problems.

Poetry – Yup, that’s right. A quick throwback to high school English class with some ambiguous poems can be a great step away from the daily norm for your mind. By giving the descriptions a shot at interpretation, you test your head to think in a way that paints pictures in your mind. With colorful, detailed mental images, this helps cool down the firing neurons that have been working to boredom all day.

Optical illusions – I don’t know about you, but these frustrate the heck out of me sometimes. Optical illusions function perfectly as a challenge, especially if you haven’t seen the illusion before. While these can grow a little weary on the eyes, they dare your mind to think outside the box in order to pretty much change perception of the illusion.

Give these brain busters a shot and exercise your mind to keep it sharp and strong. Intellectual wellness is just as important as taking care of your body. Don’t be hesitant when it comes to feeding your curiosity.


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