Wellness Wednesday: The Importance of Rest

Posted by Trevecca on Dec 9, 2020 1:26:10 PM

Wellness Wednesday_12-9-20

This post is part of an ongoing blog series from Trevecca’s SWEET (Student Wellness Education and Engagement at Trevecca) team. We hope to encourage our traditional undergraduate students as you head home for the holidays and prepare to come Back Home to the Hill in 2021.

After a fast-paced Fall 2020 semester, we know that many of our traditional undergraduates are ready for some much-needed rest! We’re so proud of you and thank you for showing resilience and adaptability as you navigated the adjusted fall semester. And now, during our Christmas break, we encourage you all to take some time to really rest and reset. After all, you deserve it!

But for many of us, it’s a challenge to truly rest even though we know it’s essential to our well-being. Here are some tips and tricks for helping you decompress during your break!

  1. Get good sleep.
    It’s common knowledge that adults are recommended to get between 7-8 hours of sleep a night. However, we know that can be challenging when you’re balancing coursework, hobbies, extracurricular activities and a social life. Sleep habits can be hard to break. If you were used to staying up until 1 a.m. while taking classes, your body will have a difficult time adjusting to an earlier bedtime. Take this downtime to re-train your body to go to sleep at an earlier time. This will also help you maintain this routine into the spring semester.

  2. Sleep hygiene.
    Part of the trick to mastering good sleep is setting a routine. Individuals who sleep and wake at the same time every day have much better sleep because their bodies easily adjust to their routine. Avoid naps late in the day, which can interfere with your sleep schedule. Keep a nighttime routine, so your body learns when its time to sleep. Keep electronics to a minimum and turn them off completely about an hour before you intend to sleep. Dimming the lights before bedtime encourages your body to begin winding down to sleep. Additionally, exercising regularly will allow you to get better quality sleep when the time comes.

  3. Relaxation.
    The concept of rest isn’t just about getting good sleep. We also need our minds to relax and allow our bodies time to reset. During the pandemic, it’s likely many of us have felt weary and stressed at times. One of the best ways to combat this is by trying out a number of relaxation techniques. 
    • Meditate. Mediation is a form of deep relaxation. Additional examples include guided imagery, deep breathing exercises and progressive muscle relaxation. There are hundreds of videos, apps and websites devoted to meditation. Take some time to research and decide which suits you best, then incorporate it into your daily routine. The Mayo Clinic offers some great advice on meditation here.

    • Spend time doing things you enjoy. We can become very relaxed doing things that we naturally enjoy. Take a nice long walk in nature, read a new book or spend time doing something with your hands, like cooking or making a craft. Doing something you enjoy gives your mind a break from the natural stressors we experience that take up emotional energy.

    • Laugh often. Ever heard of laughter yoga? There is a whole relaxation world dedicated to the power of laughter. You don’t need a reason to laugh, but even fake laughter can eventually lead to real laughter, releasing a lot of endorphins and eliminating stress from the body! Identify people, shows, or books that can bring out a deep belly laugh.

The SWEET team encourages you to spend time over Christmas break to rest, relax and reset. We look forward to seeing you in the new year!

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