Parents, this video is definitely for you. I know you are scheduled to the absolute max. I’ve got four kids and know I am. So here are what may be different steps than you’re used to, but simple nonetheless.
How many of you have heard that to help with burnout and adrenal fatigue you need to eat right, exercise and sleep. Well, it’s hard to do those things sometimes. So I wanted to give you three quick, easy steps that are going to help balance your nervous system. The nervous system is so important because it’s that master controller. I promise even if you don’t have time to add anything else in, these are going to be simple things you can do that will help you get better sleep, calm your nervous system and get it more to that parasympathetic side.
Try to Cut Out or Limit That Afternoon Pick Me Up
First, and it may be a sensitive topic for some, but you should try to avoid afternoon caffeine. I know, it tastes so good and we all love that afternoon pick up. But if you consume caffeine within eight hours of bedtime, it will actually affect your sleep at night. You may not have trouble falling asleep, but your body won’t be able to get in as deep of sleep as it needs to. So if you’re like me and you enjoy that post lunch coffee or caffiene drink, make sure you really limit that because it will not allow your system to be able to calm down enough.
Let’s dive in deeper… the nervous system has two sides. There’s a parasympathetic side, which is brake pedal – the relax and calm. That is what helps us settle down and get that deep, restful sleep we need. The opposite side is the side we run on too often, the sympathetic or gas pedal side. That’s the side we’re on when we’re tense or we’re trying to get a million things done like getting one kid to soccer practice while picking up another kid from baseball practice and simultaneously preparing dinner.
That sympathetic side is stimulated with caffeine, so if you drink that in the afternoon, that’s only going to push that scale down more which causes more stimulation in that nervous system, and it’s even harder to calm down. So cut that caffeine out in the afternoon.
Watch the Food and Alcohol Intake Before Bedtime
Number two, don’t eat anything or drink alcohol too close to bedtime. I’m not saying don’t do those things at all, you definitely need to eat, but eat and drink earlier and don’t drink too much. Two to three hours prior, same premises as caffeine, it ups your metabolism, gets your sympathetic stress system going and gets your body working. What your liver is really doing when you eat is having to process all that and work really hard. So then you can never get in that deep restful sleep that that parasympathetic allows you to do.
Now I’m guessing if you’ve tried these things they work… so do them more often. They’re a lot easier and less time consuming than adding in that hour workout – although making time for that too is not a bad thing! These are two easy steps that can help – limit afternoon caffeine and don’t eat or drink too close to bedtime.
Turn that Parasympathetic System Up
The third step is to do things that turn the parasympathetic system up. The more we can turn that side up, turn that brake pedal on, is going to help our body rest, relax, digest, activate that immune function and fuel all our systems which allows us to get into deeper sleep quicker. This will help us avoid the hormonal adrenal burnout symptoms that we get, where 5:00 PM comes around and we feel like we can’t make it.
Chiropractic adjustments are proven research-wise to take this parasympathetic side and jump it up almost immediately. If you do that consistently, it allows the body to shift from always on that sympathetics into those parasympathetics very, very easily on a consistent basis. That’s why we take care of so many moms and dads in our office that have an easier time being able to sleep, get refueled, have better energy, and avoid that burnout and overall fatigue feeling. The top three things that are told to us from adults after they start care is that they have better energy, sleep better and have some mood improvements with that. So not exactly what you may expect going into a chiropractor, but it affects so much of that parasympathetic nervous system for parents.
Turning that parasympathetic on isn’t just a chiropractic thing. You can also do things like putting down your phone a few hours before you go to bed so you’re not looking at that blue light that comes in or at least putting on some blue light blockers. Maybe reading a book before bed. A lot of little things like this that are going to help your body calm down which will help you get more restful sleep and allow your body refuel.
The reason I wanted to do this for you parents is because you matter!
A lot of our content is about kids. I know for a fact that kids can heal, grow and develop better when parents are doing better and are healthy. If you can get more of that brake pedal and less of that gas pedal stimulation, you’re going to have more energy and less fatigue and burnout. If you’re running to soccer, baseball or golf practice, a musical tonight, or wherever you’re at, I truly hope this helps you to get after it.