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How to get a good night’s sleep

If you’ve experienced insomnia, it may be due to several factors, including, depression, anxiety or stress. Many of us experience problems sleeping at some time in our life. It can be due to illness stress, or interruptions to your regular routine. If you have problems sleeping on a regular basis, and it interferes with your life, you may be suffering from a sleep disorder. Changing behaviour, as well as managing our feelings and emotions can help us to get a good night’s sleep.

Here are some steps that may improve your sleep:

  • Create a relaxed environment for sleeping – try to make your bedroom dark, cool and quiet. Turn off all your electronics such as your computer, phone and television.
  • Avoid stressful situations or anxiety inducing discussions right before bedtime. Discussing difficult topics will increase the heart beat and increase tension and will interfere with sleep. If you need to discuss anything stressful, try to allow time earlier in the day and not before bedtime.
  • Try to set a sleep schedule and stick to it – such as going to bed and getting up at scheduled times every day, even on holidays. Try to avoid going to bed too early as you may not fall to sleep and this will make you anxious. It’s also best to avoid afternoon naps.
  • Exercising regularly will increase help to increase your total sleep time. But try to avoid exercising late in the day as it’ll increase your energy and you’ll have a difficult time falling to sleep.
  • Avoid late night meals and large amounts of alcohol – Try to have your meals at least 2-3 hours before your bedtime. Limit alcohol to evenings as it will interfere with the quality of sleep.
  • Limit the use of nicotine and caffeine – These have stimulants that make it harder to for you to fall to sleep and doesn’t allow quality sleep.
  • Try to do quiet activities before bedtime – try not to go straight to bed after watching TV or after completing a full day’s work. Keep some time aside to quiet your mind after a stressful day.  You could try meditating, a hot bath or listening to music to feel calmer before you go to sleep.

Studies show that people who recognise that they have a sleep problem and seek help with it rather than taking sleeping pills can fight insomnia better. However, if you think you have tried these steps, and are still having problems please seek help from your GP.

Ways to help your children develop confidence and self- esteem 

Confidence and Self-esteem  are major traits in people which can affect their success. Although it’s a life long process, the foundations need to be established in early childhood. 

Good self-esteem helps children deal with difficult situations they might come across during their life. 

It’s important for patents to let child know how well they’re doing, which will contribute towards the child’s developing confidence and self-esteem.

Here are some tips that will help you encourage confidence and self-esteem in your child without trying hard:

  • Step back – While you may be worried about your child not doing do well, or failing at something, it’s best to try not to help them at everything, but to take a step back sometimes. It’s best to help your child to be competent and not as dependable on others for help. 
  • Allow your child to take healthy risks and solve problems on their own. Once they are able to accomplished them, recognise their success.
  • Don’t over praise – There’s a very thin line between praising and overpraising. While a complement every now and then are important for developing self-esteem, overdoing it can lower the bar, and they may stop pushing themselves to get better results. So, limit compliments to major achievements and where they are deemed important.
  • Allow your children to help you around the house by giving them small tasks to do. This encourages them to show their skills and also helps them realise they are making a contribution and will feel appreciated by other family members.
  • Encourage your children to take up new interests and pursue them. Set achievable goals on their particular interests so that when they achieve them, it will give them a sense of accomplishment that will boost their self-esteem.