Shakespeare suggested: “Enjoy the honey-heavy dew of Slumber.” Do you want the Lady Slumber to drop her dew on you? Even if you do not, she insists you should because:
- Sleep-deprivation makes you put up a poor show at the workplace. You can neither sleep nor can you pay attention to the task in hand.
- Prolonged periods of lack of sleep are directly linked with insomnia, depression and psychosis. Sometimes, you may not even realize before it is too late.
- It also deteriorates the overall metabolism of the body including digestion and consequently,
- With a lower activity, the stress increases which has its own side-effects. Stress is more difficult to handle than sleep-deprivation.
The amount of sleep that each individual requires varies from one body type to another. Some doctors can manage with three to five hours of sleep a day and some students as well. You should aim at six to eight hours of sleep a day which excludes catnaps. This sleep should be taken at a stretch. The concept of compensating for the lack of sleep at the end of the week is bunkum and unhelpful. Stick to a regular sleep pattern and figure out the number of hours you need.
Preparing for sleep is a very good idea. Thank your body for working for you during the day: your feet for walking and running and your hands for helping you with various tasks. Your body has worked hard for you and you could be grateful to it for doing what it does. Prepare before going to sleep in the following ways:-
- Do not engage in any stimulating activities before sleeping.
- Press you head, hands and feet.
- Give your feet a warm-soak by putting them in a tub of lukewarm water.
- Change into comfortable clothes which are soft and loose. Wearing loose-fitting cotton clothes is helpful.
- Do not eat a heavy meal before sleeping. You should eat dinner two hours before sleeping and if you do wish to eat, eat something very light.
If you are somehow unable to close your eyes once you have hit the pillow, the first thing that you ought to do is to stop worrying about this. Here, are some tips to help you cope with a disturbed sleep pattern. Remember that it takes time to establish a regular sleep pattern.
- Imagine a calm scene in your mind’s eye with your eyes closed. You could even look at a serene picture of nature for a while before you become drowsy and finally sleep.
- Listen to light music. If you get restless, it is better to wake up and do so.
- Read a book in hardcopy. This reading should preferably not be done on electronic devices.
- Try not to think before sleeping. Even if there is a rush of thoughts in your mind, let them come and go without worrying about them. Slowly you will fall asleep like a baby.
You might become too agitated with your inability to sleep properly. Keep reminding yourself that you will be able to normalize it. Once you have done so, Lady Slumber will drop dew on you every night!