Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Sleep: the ultimate balancing act

Despite being on Easter break, life circumstances have blocked my great need to sleep in. Today is the first day I could snooze until eight! I’ve anticipated this lazy morning for days.

Admit it; sleep is the ultimate human balancing act. Sleep is not an option, but a necessity. So many things seem more interesting than a few more hours of sleep. However, just as your body aches for exercise and nutrition it also begs for sleep.   Everyone needs a certain amount of REM if we want to feel our best, stay healthy, and keep emotional balance, mental sharpness, and productivity.
According to the National Institutes of Health, the average adult sleeps less than 7 hours per night. In today’s fast-paced society, 6 or 7 hours of sleep may sound good. In reality, it’s a recipe for chronic sleep deprivation. I know, I'm a seven-hour-a-night person.
While sleep requirements vary slightly from person to person, most healthy adults need between 7.5 to 9 hours of sleep per night to function at their best.  I know what you’re thinking; nine hours of sleep! Are you kidding me? Don’t shoot the messenger; I'm merely delivering the facts at the request of your exhausted sleep-hungry body. You are not doomed to toss and turn every night. Here are sleep tips:

1.      Stick to a sleep schedule – go to bed and wake up the same time, even on weekends.
2.      Pay attention to what you eat and drink – Don’t go to bed hungry or stuffed, and avoid alcohol, nicotine, and caffeine that only make solid sleep more difficult.

3.      Create a bedtime ritual – Do the same thing every night to tell you body to wind down, but no TV. Try reading.

4.      Get comfy – Create a room that’s ideal for sleeping.

5.      Limit daytime naps – If you nap during the day, limit it to 10–30 minutes, and take your siesta during the midafternoon.

6.      Include physical activity in your daily routine – regular exercise promotes better sleep so get moving!

7.      Manage Stress – Not impossible, but much easier said than done ;0)

My million-dollar idea is “Sleep-in-a-Can.” Experiencing too little sleep? Having memory problems? Lacking energy? Chug “Sleep-in-a-Can” for instant revitalization. It’s a great idea, but don’t hold your breath. My “Sleep-in-a-Can” concept is a dream and Dreams are Free!
The challenge here is to keep the balance and get more sleep. Good luck, Grasshopper!

No comments: