This is Sarah. She is one of my most precious friends in all the world. We met via our blogs probably close to fifteen years ago and even though we live 2587 kilometres apart, it doesn’t stop us from keeping in touch all the time. Happy birthday, Sarah! ????????
Usually when someone talks to me about wanting to make changes in their life, the first thing I ask them is how they reset themselves. It’s kind of a convoluted question, but what I mean is that I think everyone has a starting point to get them back to basics, one thing that, if they just get that right, they’ll be able to take on bigger goals. Typically, in my experience, those things have been things like cutting out alcohol, eating clean, going for a walk every evening, exercising more. Despite the praises I sang yesterday about how good it feels like clean up my diet, that isn’t actually my reset. My reset is getting enough sleep.
As with food, I tend to think of sleep as a necessity. I do it when I need to and don’t think about it much aside from that. I don’t think of sleep with the same passion as I hear others talk about it. It happens because it has to and when it’s over, it’s over until next time. The end.
There’s no denying that getting more good quality sleep (tending to my sleep hygiene, as they say these days) makes everything better and easier – eating well, exercising, coping, being productive, functioning as a loving human being.
All these things that have such high impact that we so easily let go. Sigh.
There was a while there this summer when EVERYONE was raving about this episode of The Joe Rogan Experience (podcast) when he talked to sleep doctor, Matthew Walker. It is a long haul at nearly two hours long, but if there isn’t something in there that blows your mind, I would be astounded.
Surveying a group of nearly 2,000 “healthy” sleepers (i.e. no diagnosed sleep disorders) between the ages of 45 and 84, researchers from the Duke University Medical Center found that adults who experience insufficient sleep duration, interrupted sleep cycles, and irregular bed- and waking-times face increased cardiometabolic risk, which refers to the risk for health issues like cardiovascular disease, greater obesity, hypertension, and diabetes.
And that’s just the start.
That podcast I mentioned talks about how getting fewer than seven hours of sleep per night is not enough no matter what you say, think, feel. The most compelling part for me was when Walker talked about how with the exception of in circumstances of starvation, humans are the only animals ON THE PLANET who will sacrifice their sleep. And we think we’re the smart ones.
So, I know that my next steps are related to sleep and am even considering adopting a standard bedtime. (And you know how much I hate routine.)
With that, dear readers,
Tell me, what’s your reset. What’s your first step to increased awesomeness?