Tips for getting a good nights sleep prior to your next shift!

 

There is nothing worse than waking up and feeling like you didn’t get enough sleep prior to your busy day! Problem’s sleeping can be related to medical concerns, but what if it is just some of your habits that are robbing you of sleep.  Here are some tips and tricks I have when it comes to catching those precious Zs!

 

  • Prepare your work essentials the night before!

When getting ready for your shift think about the things you will need to get together the night before. This will give you more time to sleep and your morning will not be rushed. Lay out your clothes, and supplies you might need, and any work supplies you might need. Lay everything out in a central location so you will know where everything is. Now you won’t have the morning struggle of finding what to wear and it will be one less thing to think about the night before. Now you can add some time to that alarm clock!

  • Stay off electronics in the bedroom

This means no checking social media, YouTube, or whatever your preference. If checking your phone every 5 minutes is not your weakness like mine! Then maybe you need to turn off the television. The distractions can overstimulate your brain and confuse it. It should be getting ready for sleep, but lights on screens and information are sending it different signals. If your able switch of notifications on your phone or keep it in a completely different room. I sometimes charge mine in the kitchen so I won’t be tempted to pick it up if I am already having trouble sleeping. If television is the issue you might need to completely take it out of your bedroom!

  • Try to go to bed at the same time each night

Going to bed at the same time every night and trying to awaken at the same time, can help lead to a better nights sleep. Regular sleep patterns help your body to stay in sync with your circadian rhythm. This is basically your bodies 24-hour clock. By going to bed at the same time and awakening at the same time, your body will naturally fall into a rhythm it will recognize! This is something I struggle to do. Because on your days off. Who doesn’t want to sleep in? Or I have also worked night shift and staying awake all night at home while everyone else is sleeping is no fun. But it is a scientific fact that not being consistent with your sleep patterns can lead to a disrupted circadian rhythm and lost sleep.

  • Stop hitting that snooze!

If you have trouble getting up in the morning and find yourself hitting the snooze until you are running around like the house is on fire. Then you might need to set your alarm clock across the room and out of reach. This way you have to get out of bed to hit snooze or turn it off. It also helps to find an alarm that is loud but won’t put you in a bad mood to start the day. Or to quiet so you never hear it. I found waking up to music helped me to get up faster and be in a better mood. I also set my alarm for the last possible minute because then I know I have no snoozes to hit. This works for me. I wish I could get up super early and meditate or exercise. I just know myself. I will start calculating how much sleep I would get if I hit snooze and I end up oversleeping. Really you just have to be honest with yourself and find what works for you!

  • Watch what you eat and drink before bed

If you want to have a healthy snack before bed it should be okay. But if you decide to eat your leftover hot wings from your favorite restaurant before bed you might be in for a night of sleeplessness! Only you know what will irritate your system. If you have acid reflex then you really need to watch what you put on your belly at night. Picking what you drink is important also. If you down a gallon of water before bed then your most likely going to be making a few visits to the bathroom. Or if you’re really sensitive to caffeine you might not be able to have anything with caffeine for several hours before bed.

 

These are some tips for getting a good nights sleep prior to your next shift! It may help to keep a sleep journal and find out what works for you and what doesn’t. It is best when you find out a routine that works for you to try to stick to it. This way when you start preparing for your bedtime your brain recognizes the signal and starts preparing for rest!

 

Photo by Matthew Henry on Unsplash

It is easier to have faith in God when things are good! But what if they are not good?

When things are going good in your life and there are very few troubles. It is easy to sit back and think “I got this” and pull away from God. I have been there countless times in my life. It’s not that I stop believing, I just stray a bit. It is kind of like when your child goes off to college, and calls once in awhile if they need something, or stop in to say hey, and then move on. So I would thank God for my blessings, maybe pick up prayer a little more if I sensed trouble, and go on with life. My visits at his house (church), would become less frequent. I started making less and less time for him, but I felt like my faith was strong, because everything was great!

When tragedy strikes it can overwhelm you and really catch you off guard! Then becomes the true trial of faith. You start to question God, Why me? I am faithful? And maybe even start to place blame. The truth of the matter is we live in a very imperfect world. This life is hard and there will be tragedies and heartache. As humans we have the gift of free will, but with this gift comes down sides, as we can see many of them playing out in the news daily. God uses these moments to pull us closer to him if we will let him. God is a our father, and like any father he wants what is best for his kids. If we make a poor decision, then God will use this to help us grow as a person if we let him.

So when things are not going to good, it helps to lean on God! That is what we are supposed to do. I know I have had to a lot lately. My mother got very sick in January and my whole life changed. I almost lost her! She was on a ventilator (a machine that breaths for you), and they couldn’t get her off of it. So they had to move her to a special facility that was about 2 hours from home. I made that trip 2-3 times a week, and also tried to hold down my job. My mother also took care of my older brother, who has down syndrome. He came to live with my husband, 2 kids, and I. My brother made the trip with me to see our mother. There was many times we weren’t sure if she was going to make it. It was an emotional roller coaster. I work night shift and I got a call from the hospital that my mom had a possible stroke! There was nothing I could do, but wait for a phone call to see why she had become unresponsive. Since mom was so sick, I became legal guardian of my brother, so I could legally make decisions for him.

So I was caring for my mother, my brother, working in a caregiving profession, of course my 2 kids, and finally it just all came down on me. I became burned out! My husband was there to help out. He has been absolutely amazing through all of this. He had open arms when my brother came to live with us. He also stepped up in many areas. Without his support, I probably would of had a full on nervous breakdown.

I had taken a new job, and had to step away and tell them I was burned out. I didn’t know what I was going to do for money, but I couldn’t go to work the way I was feeling. We struggled with bills, and it was, and still is a trying time. It was during this time, I became closer with God. I read in my bible, had prayer, and even meditated. I had neglected myself for so long, that my body finally just said enough is enough. With all this going on in my life I had 2 choices. I could blame God for my sorrow or grow closer to him. I chose to grow closer to him, and I am so glad I did!

My mother is now closer to home. She is in a rehab facility, and she is working on coming home! That is my home, because she wont be able to live by herself. I have seen what the power of prayer has done in my life. My mom has been back from the brink many times. If you would have asked me in March if I thought this would be possible, I would have been in disbelief. My brother is adjusting incredibly well. He comes with me to visit mom and enjoys being in our noisy household. I look over at him when we are in the mix of the hustle and bustle and he is smiling.

I returned to work and I have been doing really good. I feel like I am reenergized. I have started school to work towards my Masters degree. So professionally I am on a better path too. I was exploring getting out of nursing all together, but with lots of prayer and self discovery, I feel this is where I am supposed to be. I actually had a supervisor come up to me the other night and said, “Thank you for everything you did tonight, you are a great nurse”. It made me smile, because it validated that I am where I’m supposed to be.

So have faith in God even in the storms of your life. Storms don’t last forever. They might seem that way, and I am not totally out of my storm yet, but I know with God at the wheel, I will end up where I need to be.

Faith Bible Verses

  • To keep your faith strong, you have to visit God in his house (Church), don’t be Gods college kid, who only shows up if they need something, or calls once in awhile.
  • Prayer is important! This is the way you communicate the good, bad, and the ugly. God listens to it all, he is just waiting for the call.
  • Finally, let God know you love him and your thankful, even in the bad times. There is always something to be thankful for. When we get in a situation, it is human nature to just concentrate on the negative.

 

Sometimes you might really have to dig to find the positive. When you do find it, hang on to it through the storm, and collect more on the way. Pretty soon the clouds will part, the sun will come out, and you will look back, and stand in amazement of the incredibly God we have. Much love! XO