Always Tired? Why You're Exhausted and How to Fix It

Alt: Woman sleeping on her desk.

The alarm goes off, you blearily open your eyes, and your first thought is, ‘Why am I always tired?’ Constant fatigue is a nightmare. You want to do everyday activities like a normal, well-functioning person. Yet, you’re constantly feeling tired and wish life would come to a halt so you can rest.

Severe fatigue isn’t how it has to be. So, we’ve collated the top reasons you may be dozing at your desk and what to do about it.

You’ve Got Sleep Debt

Sleep debt is when you ‘owe’ your body sleep, and there’s no way to get it back unless you get some shut-eye. For example, if you stay up late and get up at your regular time, your body won’t have enough rest. So, you'll be sleepy until you catch up on those extra hours.

You may have chronic sleep debt, which occurs when you consistently don’t rest enough for weeks, months, or even years. It may be caused by long working hours, watching late-night TV, or caring for a child. You can also create sleep debt if you procrastinate going to bed - perhaps because of anxiety or the desire to have more free time. 

Read more: 5 Reasons You Procrastinate Going to Bed.

You need around seven to nine hours of sleep each night, but that varies from person to person. Sometimes, you require less in summer or may want extra if you’re going through a stressful time. Unfortunately, you can’t ‘bank’ or ‘save up’ sleep. That means if you rest for three more hours than usual, you can’t use those hours to stay up late.

What to do about sleep debt

The first thing you need to do is pay off your debt. And that means catching up on all those missed hours.

  • Take a holiday dedicated to sleep - Take a week (or two) to rest and do nothing else. It’s easier said than done because holidays are precious. You want to be on a beach, not sleeping away the hours at home. But you can always recuperate for a week somewhere hot and sunny.

  • Nap when you can - Sneaking in a snack-sized sleep is a good way to top up your energy. If you’re exhausted, don’t push yourself to stay awake. Have a quick kip (30-40 minutes is optimum) and stick to your usual bedtime routine.

You’re Lacking Proper Nutrition

Not eating enough wholesome, fresh foods can leave you struggling with tiredness. This is because your body doesn’t have the nutrients it needs to help your organs work efficiently. The result is slower blood flow and, therefore, slow oxygen circulation.

If you’re experiencing sudden tiredness during the day, it could be due to a sugar crash. For example, if you eat a sugary lunch with no fibre, followed by a mug of coffee, your caffeine and glucose levels take a nose dive.

What to do about nutrition for sleep

  • Eat fibre-rich foods - Foods high in fibre break down slowly, gradually releasing energy. It gives you consistent stamina, rather than the rapid high and crash of instant-releasing energy foods.

  • Take collagen supplements - Arella Beauty’s vegan collagen is abundant in amino acids, which are the building blocks of collagen. One benefit of taking collagen (and there are many!) is it keeps your arteries strong and flexible. This allows for faster and better blood flow, helping diffuse oxygen and nutrients, which equals more energy.

Read more: How To Boost Your Amino Acids For Collagen.

You’re Burnt Out

Burnout is a feeling of utter exhaustion, emotionally, physically and mentally. Everyday life is relentless, and all you want is for the world to pause so you can rest. 

Burnout is often caused by significant events like moving house, starting an independent business, or becoming a new parent. It can also result from taking on too much. Like working full time while studying or a demanding job that doesn’t give you a break.

What to do when you have burnout

  • Take a break - If you can, take time off and use it to rest rather than continuing to run around. Have lazy mornings, eat well and do things you enjoy. But don’t pack your time off with events to make you feel productive. Remember, rest is a form of productivity.

  • Ask for support - Burnout can happen because you’re trying to do everything yourself. Or perhaps you have depression and fatigue, which often come hand-in-hand. Seek help, whether it’s from a therapist, friends, family or work colleagues.

  • Eliminate your source of burnout - You can’t always drop the thing that’s making you tired. But if it’s a demanding and toxic job, move somewhere you’re appreciated. If you’re saying ‘yes’ to everyone and everything, cut it out! Instead, prioritise yourself.

You Have a Chronic Illness

There are a multitude of chronic illnesses out there, and they affect everyone differently. However, a common problem is managing extreme fatigue. Sometimes, it’s not the condition itself but the side effects of medication. And that can be extremely disheartening.

What to do if you have a chronic illness and fatigue symptoms

Laura, the founder of Arella Beauty, is no stranger to managing a long-term illness. In 2012, she was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease, an inflammation of the bowel. Laura tried many medications, but they all came with harmful side effects. 

So, she decided to drastically change her lifestyle, which helped improve gut health and stamina. After a lot of work and commitment, Laura’s Crohn’s disease went into remission for over ten years. Which brings us to the first point:

  • Supplement your body - When you have a chronic illness, your body often needs a helping hand. So, why not give it one? Arella Beauty’s Vegan Liquid Collagen Supplement promotes collagen production for better sleep quality and improved energy. 

Please note that supplements are not a replacement for prescribed medication. So always consult your doctor before taking.

  • Be kind to yourself - Having a chronic condition isn’t fair, and you might wish that your body ‘worked’ like everyone else’s. The best thing to do is acknowledge your frustration but also recognise that you need more sleep than the average person. So, use it as an opportunity to have a self-care night every night. 

You’re Bored

This is a strange one, but sometimes boredom can make you tired. If you’re dragging yourself to a monotonous job or folding laundry 24/7, it becomes draining. Everyone has to do things they don’t love. But repeatedly forcing your brain for hours, day-in-day-out will drain your battery.

What to do if boredom is causing excessive tiredness

  • Switch things up - When a job no longer challenges you, speak to your manager and expand your knowledge. Ask for a helping hand when home chores get too repetitive or do things that you enjoy as a reward.

  • Take an energy boost supplement - Even if you change things up, boring life tasks still exist. So, take an Energy Boost Supplement to perk you up. It fuels your body with blood-boosting turmeric and calming chamomile, keeping you balanced no matter what the day gives you.

Nurture Your Beautiful Body With Arella Beauty

Find peace and serenity by taking the time to refuel. Get your beauty sleep, feed your gut with health-enhancing nutrients and indulge in blissful supplements. Stop the battle with severe fatigue and, instead, welcome energy into your life.

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Written by Emma Carey for Arella Beauty.

Emma is a holistic beauty and wellness writer. She has three years of experience in the well-being industry and a Master’s degree in Creative Writing and Wellness. Check out her portfolio and follow her on Instagram.