Mindfulness has been the key to a peaceful and conscious lifestyle. But what is the key to mindfulness? Despite the many benefits of mindfulness some of us still struggle to reach that place of awareness and peacefulness. What is missing? Believe it or not, you might need to start with sleep.
We all want to be more mindful. There are countless benefits of mindfulness. One of the main reasons why mindfulness matters, is being a great source of stress relief. We all live a fast-paced life where there is so much stress and so little time to sleep. Those two things together (mindfulness and sleep) can change things around for you.
I don’t have time to be Mindful or to Sleep!
This is most definitely the wrong approach that you can take. No matter how busy you are, you should find time to sleep and to be mindful. If you want to complete things more efficiently, you should get more sleep and you should be mindful. It might seem that you would be less productive because you would have less time, however, you would be able to complete more in less time when you are focused, well-rested and mindful.
Sleep and Mindfulness
No matter how busy you are, you need to find some time to dedicate to yourself and what matters.
According to research from the University of South Florida, sleep matters when it comes to mindfulness. The study published in the journal Sleep Health, suggests that a little extra sleep of 29 minutes exactly is enough to increase participants’ capacity for mindfulness the next day.
What is the Connection between Sleep and Mindfulness?
Researchers tracked sleep patterns and measured the degree mindfulness of 614 nurses for two weeks looking for any correlation and connection between the two.
What is mindfulness? Well, according to the Oxford dictionary mindfulness can be defined as:
“A mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations.”
Researchers in the study relied on self-reported data where they asked nurses to rate their mindful attention multiple times a day. Afterward, they compared this to sleep-wake patterns as recorded by a smartwatch.
Soomi Lee, PhD explained in a news release:
“One can be awake and alert but not necessarily mindful. Similarly, one can be tired or in low arousal but still can be mindful.”
This means that more sleep doesn’t necessarily mean that someone is more mindful. It only indicates that they are more likely to be mindful.
Researchers found that good night sleep can improve mindfulness. Nurses who had a better night’s sleep reported greater mindful attention during the next day.
On top of that mindfulness also improved the feeling of sleepiness and those who had greater mindful attention were 66% less likely to deal with insomnia. This hints there is an interesting sleep-mindfulness positive impact.
Sleep and mindfulness are both important on our overall well-being.
So if you always struggle with mindfulness, paying more attention to sleep, both could be the key. Try to sneak those 29 minutes of deep rest, consider going to bed earlier or waking up later. Clear your bad nighttime habits and become more mindful.
Why Mindfulness is a Superpower?
When we talk about mindfulness, we should think about mindful walking, mindful eating, mindful attention to the body, breath, feelings, emotions, and thoughts, mindful listening without judgment. Why mindfulness matters?
- It can improve focus, the ability to pay attention, focus, and concrete
- Mindfulness can reduce stress
- It can increase emotional intelligence
- Improve emotional regulation including reducing impulsiveness and reduce behavior such as explosions, suspensions, and rowdiness
- Mindfulness can lead towards more respect and empathy towards others
- Improve physical well being
- Increase resilience and give you the capacity to overcome challenges
- It can improve collaboration and creativity
Why Sleep Matters?
The benefits of sleep have been researched extensively. There are so many benefits of sleep.
- Sleep can improve your heart health
- Sleep can reduce stress (just like mindfulness)
- Sleep can make you more alert
- Sleep can help you lose weight
- Sleep can improve your memory
There are so many benefits of both sleep and meditation and luckily they go hand in hand. Get more sleep and become mindful. Your life will change.