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Ways to Ease Stress and Improve Sleep in 2021

If you’re feeling tired and stressed, know that you aren’t alone.

To say that 2020 was an overwhelming and testing year is an understatement at best. After months of anxiety and worry, it’s no wonder why many of us are feeling stressed out and aren’t sleeping great at night. Our team at WCI Pools & Spas only wants the best for your health and wellness, which is why we put together this helpful guide with a variety of lifestyle changes that can help you take a healthier approach to your stress and sleep.

Best Ways to Ease Stress and Improve Sleep Patterns?

Did you know that there is a connection between your sleep patterns and stress levels? Many find that one can have a direct impact on the other. For instance, if you are having trouble sleeping, you may have a more difficult time managing stressful situations due to fatigue and irritability. It works the other way around as well, as many who are feeling stressed or overwhelmed in their daily life may have a hard time falling asleep at night, due to their anxiety and the many thoughts spiraling through their mind.

Below is a series of lifestyle changes that you can make, which can have a direct impact on both stress and sleep. Many of which can be done from the comfort of your home or outside on your own terms. Please keep in mind, these are helpful suggestions to help you get started, but you may want to consult your doctor for a more personalized approach and to ensure your best health.

Determine Stressors

The first and arguably most crucial step to ease your stress and improve sleep patterns. Take some time to really identify the causes of your stress. Once you know exactly what is causing you to feel stress and possibly having an impact on your stress levels, you can create a plan to combat or resolve these stressors.

Getting to the root of the issue and creating a plan to move forward positively is a great first step toward a proactive approach to less stress and better sleep.

Physical Activity

Regular physical activity is key to living a healthy lifestyle in general, but it can specifically contribute toward stress relief and better sleep patterns. The act of physical activity can help you to “work off” the feelings of stress, releasing a range of positive “feel-good” endorphins. It can also help to burn excess energy and even help ease muscle tension through improved flexibility and mobility, further helping improve your sleep patterns.

Not to mention that regular physical activity can contribute to maintaining a healthy weight. Weight gain or maintaining an unhealthy weight in itself can contribute to higher stress levels and poor sleep, meaning that physical activity can provide you with a multi-faceted approach.

Stuck on which physical activity to try? Here are 10 ideas to help you get started:

  1. Walking, jogging or running
  2. Hiking a local trail
  3. Cycling or roller blading
  4. Swimming or aquatic exercise
  5. Dancing
  6. Gardening or housework
  7. Yoga or Pilates
  8. Playing with your kids or pets
  9. Floor exercises or strength training
  10. Martial arts or kickboxing

Many of these exercises can be done from the comfort and safety of your home, or outdoors on your own terms, so you don’t have to worry about going to a local gym or joining a class if you prefer.

Healthy Diet

A well-balanced diet can help to set your body up for success with a healthier lifestyle. Drinking enough water and fueling your body with all the right nutrients can help to build a more solid foundation by reducing inflammation and oxidation through less weight gain.

There is a strong connection between fluctuations in brain blood flow and brain health, both which can be negatively impacted by stress. By fueling your body with nutrient-dense food, you can combat the effects of stress on your body.

If your health or weight is a factor when considering your stressors, eating a healthier and more well-balanced diet may be the right approach for you.

Hydrotherapy

Hydrotherapy has been used for thousands of years for the many health and lifestyle benefits that it can offer, including better sleep and reduced stress. The warm environment inside of a hot tub or swim spa can help to relax your body and ease muscle tension, helping you to prepare for a full night of comfortable rest.

Easing the physical tension and stress on your body can lead to the same for your emotional or mental stress, as well. The better you feel on the outside, the better you’re likely to feel on the inside, too. Using a hot tub or swim spa on a regular basis can contribute to your self-care, essentially providing you with a regular activity that is dedicated to just you.

Bedtime Routine

Set yourself up for success with better sleep patterns by creating a healthy bedtime routine. Try including the following, until you find what works best for you:

  • Fresh bedding
  • Cooler temperature
  • Comfortable pajamas
  • Prioritize personal hygiene
  • Drink an herbal tea or water
  • Have a light snack

You may also want to practice relaxation techniques, such as reading, listening to soothing music, yoga, meditation, deep breathing, or a warm bath.

Setting Goals

Bring structure to your lifestyle by setting a series of goals. We suggest using the SMART approach, which stands for:

Specific

Measurable

Achievable

Realistic

Timely

These goals can help you work toward a positive change or series of changes in your lifestyle, which can directly or indirectly have an impact on your sleep patterns and stress levels.

While goals differ for everyone based on their lifestyle and specific needs, here are five ideas that might help you get started:

  1. Make more time for yourself to do the things you love
  2. Get 8,000 – 10,000 steps every day
  3. Make one new healthy meal each week
  4. Drink at least eight cups of water a day
  5. Swim in your pool or soak in a spa at least three times a week

Which SMART goals will you set for yourself in 2021?

WCI Pools & Spas in Ames and Urbandale

Did you find the information in this article helpful to your health, wellness and overall lifestyle? Take a look at some of the other articles in our blog or our owner resources section for more information. To take your wellness to the next level and really enjoy your home and backyard, consult our experts at WCI Pools & Spas today. We have two showrooms located in Ames and Urbandale, Iowa to best meet your needs.

We specialize in a range of home and backyard leisure products from brands that undoubtedly lead the industry, including:

Visit your nearest showroom today to take a more proactive approach to your health, home and lifestyle.

Hot Tub, Swim Spa & Swimming Pool Installation Gallery

Having trouble finding the perfect installation design for your backyard living space? This gallery of installation ideas might be exactly what you need to get inspired!

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