We all know that sleep’s important and we should be getting seven to eight hours a night. But how often does life get in the way and those hours slip because of getting up for small children, waiting up for big children, being bogged down in work, or trying to fit in something resembling a social life?
When I’m busy with work, which is pretty much most of the time, I tend to go to bed later and often wake during the night with thoughts pinging around my head. I know I should be getting more sleep but as long as I’m feeling fine I can carry on like that, can’t I?
Hmm, not so much. Eventually my mind tells me I really need to put down the laptop and notebook and get to bed. It’s taken me a while to recognise the signs but they’re definitely there. Does this sound familiar?
:: everything seems to be a bit more difficult than before
:: you feel more fed up, nothing’s going to plan and there’s too much to do
:: the world seems a darker place, the news is particularly depressing
:: quite frankly, it all feels a bit too much!
I’ve learned, eventually, that when I start to feel the above it’s time I had some early nights. Actually, life hasn’t suddenly become extra hard, the news isn’t any more negative than a few days ago and my to do list is as long as it’s always been. But my ability to deal with it has been reduced because my mental reserves are depleted and my energy tank is running on empty.
If I go to bed early and read a book (NOT having a last minute pootle around social media on my phone) I’ll nod off earlier than usual and get a better quality, as well as a longer, night’s sleep. A couple of nights like that and, miraculously, I feel much better able to deal with the long to do list, I gain some perspective on life’s difficulties and feel decidedly less frowny! The magic of sleep, eh? Of course, what I need to learn is to snap out of this cycle and make sleep more of a priority. I’m working on it.
How do you know when life’s getting on top of you? And what do you do to get back in your groove? Perhaps sleep isn’t the issue and for you it’s taking time out on your own? I’d love to hear how you deal with life running you rather than you running your life so please share in the comments below!