Lack Of Sleep

Tired black man lying on yellow bed with red mattress

Going To Bed Too Late

With so many options for entertainment at our fingertips, we often forget the importance of getting a good night’s sleep. One may even go as far as calling technology the enemy of sleep; the stimulation goes against the relaxed state of mind needed to fall asleep smoothly and free of distractions.

Some people believe that it’s irrelevant what time you go to sleep, as long as you make up for it by waking up later in the morning. The problem is that waking up later in the morning does not make you feel more refreshed, than if you would have gone to sleep earlier in the night, such as 9pm or 10pm. There is something about going to bed early that makes you feel amazing the next day!

The lack of sleep literally paralyzes your day. Your interactions with others are negatively affected, because you become easily irritable and annoyed. It may not even be their fault; just their presence and ways of being may annoy you enough to confront them and spark an argument.

The lack of sleep also takes away your motivation to work or study. By early evening, you feel so tired that you feel like doing nothing but relaxing on the couch or going to sleep. For what you thought was fun to stay up last night, you end up paying for it in grumpiness and lack of motivation the following day.

The lack of sleep also robs you of your vitality the next day. You just don’t feel as happy about things; it’s as if your personality has been robbed and you’ve been turned into a zombie, just wandering around without positive energy. You are then confronted with a mental battle based on two opposing options: to go to sleep later and make up for it by having fun, or to go to sleep early and sacrifice all opportunities of entertainment.

To avoid this dilemma, the best course of action is to maintain a consistent sleep schedule that involves you going to sleep no later than 10pm, and waking up no later than 8am. Don’t sacrifice your sleep for more hours of the day; extra hours won’t pay off in the long run. Proper sleep is necessary for a healthy state of mind!

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

The Importance Of Sleep

Man with hand on his face suffering from lack of sleep

What Can Lack Of Sleep Do To You?

Do not underestimate the importance of sleep. We lead busy lives full of responsibilities and goals that sometimes interfere with our sleep hygiene. After a long day of work, the last thing you want to do is go to sleep, only to wake up and go to work again; where is the excitement?

After a long day of work, you want to spend time with your family, play your favorite video game, drink a beer and watch “the game” or rent a new movie. But sometimes this pattern has to be broken by a good night’s sleep. The truth is that a good sleep hygiene will help you enjoy your downtime much more.

A lack of sleep can flip your personality upside down and turn you into someone who you are not: miserable, irritable, rude, defensive and easily annoyed. Your school and work performance may decrease; your concentration becomes subpar. You may lose interest in exercising; playing a sport may become more challenging and less interesting.

Many people underestimate the importance of sleep because they feel as if they are not gaining much from it; after all, the saying goes, “sleep is the cousin of death.” But in reality, sleep is when memories become consolidated, your mind and body recuperate, your fatigue dissipates and your mood stabilizes.

Developing the following sleep hygiene is crucial to reaping the benefits of sleep:

  • Go to sleep at the same hour every night
  • Wake up at the same hour every morning
  • Leave your bed after 30 minutes if you cannot fall asleep (the bed is only for sleep and sex)
  • Do not eat or drink a couple of hours prior to sleep
  • Do not consume alcohol a couple of hours prior to sleep
  • Do not exercise a couple of hours prior to sleep
  • Do not use electronics prior to sleep
  • Do not read, watch television or use the internet prior to sleep
  • Do not rely on sleeping medications

Once you start to appreciate the benefits of sleep, you will become thankful for rediscovering a fresh and vibrant version of yourself!

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)