I have always been a night owl but my tendency to stay up later came after having children. With my babies tucked up for the night, I finally had precious time for myself. I loved dong whatever I fancied at that time; reading, writing, watching television, family tree, catching up on work; the list goes on. It was a lovely, peaceful, uninterrupted time.
Fast forward to 2014 and I still procrastinate on sleep. I rarely go out on weeknights because I have work the next day but for some crazy reason I don't hit the sack at a reasonable hour. I could have gone out! This sleep procrastination often leaves me tired and lethargic the next day. (Read about sleep procrastination here.) Sometimes, on the weekend I sleep later and then my whole cycle is disturbed. I'm obviously a slow learner because I keep repeating the pattern. My mind determines my activity when I really need to listen to the needs of my body.
The Dalai Lama says that sleep is the best meditation. I've been developing a regular pattern of meditation but sleep is critical. Gretchen Rubin promotes the value of sleep in her book, 'The Happiness Project' where she reported positive effects after she made a concerted effort to get more sleep. Arianna Huffington in her book, 'Thrive' also strongly advocates the value of sleep. And of course, there is the old adage, "Early to bed, early to rise, makes one healthy, wealthy and wise."
From a personal perspective I know that I am more energetic, enthusiastic, productive and cheerful when I have sufficient sleep. And since these qualities are also the qualities of a spirited! person this is a challenge that needs my commitment. Aiming for 9pm sleep would be too great a change at the moment but I am going to start today with an 8:00pm switch off of electrical devices, a 9pm bedtime and 10pm light off. To keep me honest I plan on reporting in on Facebook to let you know how my new routine is going. If you're up for the challenge please join me.
In readiness for this new habit I have totally de-cluttered my bedroom, changed the bedding, vacuumed and dusted. My reading is organised beside my bed. Although there is suggestion that reading should not be done in bed I have disregarded this ideal as I need reading as an added incentive to turn off the electronic devices.
Do you have bedtime procrastination?
What routine will you establish for appropriate sleep?