The title of this article (How to easily become healthier, smarter and more productive) sounds like clickbait. Except it’s not.
The answer is true, is easy to do, most of need to do it, but most of us won’t.
In listening to a talk this week, it was #1 on the list of productivity hacks.
It is as essential to our health as breathing yet most of us go through life with what would be the equivalent of shallow breathing.
I am talking about sleep.
Did you hear yourself saying, “Yeah, yeah, yeah. Tell me something new,” or “I would love to get more sleep but I have too much to do,” or “I have trouble falling asleep but need to get up in the morning when I could sleep”.
The truth is: 1. Most of us need to get more sleep, and
2. Most of us can get more sleep without missing anything important.
How do you know if you personally need more sleep? Easy answer: do you use an alarm to wake you up in the morning?
If the answer to the second question is yes, then the answer to the first question is yes.
If you thought to yourself, “Everyone uses an alarm,” that shows how very wide spread and acceptable sleep deprivation is in our world today.
Perhaps if everyone is doing it, it isn’t that bad. Is the saying, ‘you can sleep after your die’ correct?
No, it’s not. Without a decent amount of quality sleep, chances are you will die sooner (15% higher if you sleep 5 hours or less). In addition, you will not have enjoyed life as much as you could’ve if you were well rested.
These are some of the reasons we need to honour our bodies need for sleep:
Because some growth hormones are only release during sleep (esp. important for children and adolescents) as are some hormones that help build muscle mass and repairs cells and tissues in all of us.
To increase our body’s defenses which will reduce our level of inflammation, our chance of common illnesses and our risk of chronic illnesses.
To increase our bodies’ ability to heal and repair blood vessels and the heart.
To reduce the chance of hypertension.
To aid our balance and coordination, reducing injuries due to trips and falls.
To reduce carb cravings.
To reduce the risk of falling asleep at a dangerous time, such as when driving.
To increase our level of engagement in life, increase our decision-making abilities, our ability to concentrate and learn new things
To support both short and long term memory, and creativity.
To keep the parietal lobe active (involved in information from the senses).
To keep the occipital lobe active (involved in visual processing)
To keep the prefrontal lobe active, which is responsible for distinguishing between ideas, for social control, and to be able to tell the difference between good and bad (lack of sleep = reduced glucose to the brain in the prefrontal lobe).
We know that sleep is the answer to becoming healthier, smarter and more productive and most of us know that we need more sleep, the question is: How do we get more quality sleep when we have already tried to get more sleep and failed, and have way too many things to do?
Stay tuned where we will answer that question next week.
If you are not getting eight hours of sleep a night, you are harming your performance during the day. Lack of sleep significantly lowers all forms of cognitive performance, making everything you do more difficult. ~Piers Steel
To prep for next week, two questions to ponder
1. What are some of the most common things you do in the evening?
2. If I could give you a bonus half hour a day but you could only get it if you did something that made you happy, what would you do with that 30 minutes?
Have you thought about trying a weighted blanket for yourself? If you are considering it, now would be the time to buy one.
Our new uniblankets came in on Friday. Check out all of new colours and prints!
If you aren't sure if it would help you to fall asleep, stay asleep or get a better quality of sleep, trial the blanket. You have 30 days to see if it will work for you.
If you are interested in the websites used to create the article above, we have it contact us. (having trouble with this link? I was. It should take you to firstname.lastname@example.org)