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Debunking the 8 Most Common Sleep Myths

There is a lot of misinformation on the Internet that can affect your perceptions and quality of sleep. These myths can impact your perception of sleep and its relationship to your overall health.

Limiting beliefs about sleep

Most sleep myths are related to sleep limiting beliefs and fears. It is possible to get better sleep and replace limiting beliefs with more positive ones. This is a great place to start when learning how you can sleep better.

We will be debunking some common misconceptions about insufficient or disordered sleeping.

I have always had a poor sleep quality.

Poor sleep is not an irreversible condition. You may not be able achieve perfect sleep but you can improve your sleep with the right tools, information and practices.

Poor sleep quality can lead to serious health issues.

This is false, however. Although sleep can affect your immune system, it is not the only cause of serious health problems. While poor sleep can make your symptoms worse, it is unlikely to be the cause.

I need to get 8 hours sleep every night.

8 hours sleep is a myth. For optimal health and recovery, everyone needs different amounts of sleep. Sleep tracking tools and practices can help determine the amount of sleep your body needs, as well as the best times to go to bed and rise based on your sleep cycle.

I must get enough sleep to be able to function the next day.

Even though you might not feel your best or function at your full potential, your body can still function well with the right amount of rest. While paying off your sleep debt can improve your recovery, don’t fret too much about not getting enough sleep every now and again.

I need less sleep the older I get.

It is false. The amount of sleep you require each night will not change as you age.

I feel anxious, irritable or depressed when I’m not getting enough sleep.

Although sleep deprivation doesn’t cause depression or anxiety, it can make symptoms worse.

Using alcohol before bed can help me to sleep better.

The quality of your sleep can be affected by drinking alcohol before you go to bed. __S.28__ You should think about going to bed, not just passing out.

I get more sleep the more I spend time in bed.

It is not good for your health, sleep quality, recovery, or wellbeing to spend too much time in bed before you fall asleep. It is much easier to get a good night of sleep if you know when the best time to go to sleep to decrease sleep latency.

Empowering beliefs about sleep

You now have a better understanding of sleep myths. It’s time to change any negative beliefs and start believing in new, empowering beliefs that will allow you to get the best sleep possible.

Now is the time to examine your limiting beliefs and fears about sleep. Write down your new empowering beliefs about sleeping. Use identity affirmation to make statements that are more about who you are than what you do. You could say, “I am someone who prioritizes sleep” or “it is absolutely possible for me fix my sleep” or “I’m an excellent sleeper.”

If you have a negative belief about sleeping, stop, take a deep breathe, exhale, and let go of the negative thought. Then, repeat your affirmation.