Sleepy Sleep

Good sleep is absolutely essential to a happy and healthy life. It affects energy, eating habits, endurance, focus, recovery, memory, and overall brain power. Why the hell would we sacrifice it?

Well, for fun, obviously. It’s more fun to say yes to staying up late with friends than it is to leave at 10 pm and go to bed.

Many people also feel that gaining more hours in their day adds to their productivity.

Surely sacrificing sleep every once in a while is excusable, but for many of us, it’s a habit; and such sacrifices actually do the opposite of what we hope for.

I woke up this morning at 4 am. Not on purpose. When I wake up it’s nearly impossible for me to go back to sleep. With 3 extra hours in my morning, I would be able to get so much more done, right? Wrong, Sally (or whatever your name is who’s reading).

My morning routine took an hour and 45 minutes as opposed to the usual 45 minutes. I couldn’t keep my focus on anything for more than 60 seconds. My mind would wander and no matter how captivating whatever I was reading or writing was, I inevitably found myself daydreaming about going back to bed.

Something similar happens when I have late nights with friends. Don’t get me wrong; I love them…on occasion. Having beautiful conversations, doing drugs, and drinking beers with my peoples until the sun rises are some of my fondest memories. However, if it happens every weekend, I feel the costs outweigh the benefits.

4 am euphoria leads to 11 am misery–or whenever the crash hits. A truly glorious morning evolves into pleas for death, and vows that I will never do that again.

Every decision is a tradeoff. We typically think about trading good sleep and a comfortable tomorrow for a long, fun evening tonight. But what if we considered other tradeoffs?

What if we sacrificed tonight’s hours for: making an early breakfast in the morning; going hiking when we wake up, or any other combination of plans you’d rather be alive and energetic for the day after?

We’re all human. It’s unreasonable to ask everyone to get great sleep every night…but if we only sacrificed it on rare occasions, we’d be shocked to see that it actually makes us more connected, more productive, and more willing to be adventurous.

Get some Zs.