“Each night, when I go to sleep, I die. And the next morning, when I wake up, I’m reborn.”
After a busy day of working for hours or maybe going out with our friends to enjoy the evening, all we need is a good night’s sleep to rejuvenate for the next day. We often assume sleep to be a state of mental inactivity, we think that our incredible brain which works endlessly comes to a pause when we sleep. This assumption however is incorrect. When one goes to sleep our neurological activities still go on and some very important memory related functions take place.
Sleep is essential for our physical and mental growth to take place. While we sleep, the brain transfers the short-term memory into the long-term memory. After a good sleep one is even said to experience higher levels of concentration and productivity. People who continuously work for over 24 hours are observed to make more errors than their counterparts who get sufficient sleep. Getting enough hours of sleep is directly related to our metabolism and regulates how many calories our body requires. Poor sleep is strongly linked with obesity and individuals trying to lose weight are highly advised to get proper sleep. Quality of sleep also affects how much a person is susceptible to diseases. Poor sleepers have a higher risk of acquiring chronic diseases like heart diseases, higher blood pressure and diabetes. Our immune system heavily relies on sleep quality to perform healthily. All these stats and research clearly demonstrates how much our health depends on our sleep.
Another sphere which the quality of sleep affects, is our social life. Sleep loss impairs an individual’s ability to interact socially. The person is irritated and has difficulty in reading facial expressions like anger and happiness.
Sleep is extremely prudent for growth and learning new skills. Have you ever wondered how a young child acquires so many skills in such a small amount of time? The explanation lies in the over 14 hours of sleep which a child requires! For adults, a good sleep should last around 7-8 hours. Even though the essential amount of sleep for a person reduces with age, today’s era is promoting habits which are ruining the sleep quality of our population.
Students often pull all-nighters to study for exams. Teenagers and even many adults are up late, busy with their smartphones. Higher levels of tension, anxiety and depression in the population is leading to insomnia. One may not observe the ill effects of bad sleep instantly but over time, the damage is clearly visible.
Now that we realize the importance of sleep and how our habits and work schedule is damaging our health, it’s time to know what steps can be taken to undo the harm. Try to maintain a fixed time to go to bed and wake up and follow it even during weekends. Irregular sleep schedule affects our internal clock’s rhythm. Avoid any form of strong light like TV or computer screen (also your smartphone) at least one hour before you sleep. Light signals our brain that it’s time to be awake. Do not take any form of caffeine like tea, coffee, carbonated drinks or nicotine (cigarettes). These substances have stimulants which affect our ability to sleep. Their effects can last over 8 hours and thus must be avoided. Our bodies, when tired and experiencing physical exertion, automatically desire sleep. So doing exercise and being physically active during the day improve sleep quality.
We, humans are marvelous creatures, capable of doing great things; yet we spend one third of our life in sleep, healing for our tomorrow.
I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.
If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.
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We also have a Facebook Group Restarter Moms for Mothers or Women who would like to rejoin their careers post a career break or women who are enterpreneurs.
We are also running a series Inspirational Women from January 2021 to March 31,2021, featuring around 1000 stories about Indian Women, who changed the world. #choosetochallenge