Sleep Matters

Sleep Matters

How many times have you heard the phrases,
‘You can sleep when you’re dead.’,  or
‘No-one looks back and remembers the nights they had plenty of sleep.’

All fair in some alternative, ‘party hard’ circumstances, but in the busy, non-stop business world that many of us are in, we need to pencil in a slot for our beauty sleep. It is important. And it will make a difference to your performance (in the workplace).
Kirsty Mac’s personal opinion, ‘Sleep is overrated’, says it all really, whereas I just can’t get enough.

I always set an alarm, I never wake up by chance and I can’t wait until it’s bedtime. Being the vampire that she is, KM uses nighttimes to her advantage, often sending emails at 3am, leaving me wondering if, I too, should be wide awake and working.

Therein lies, myself and Kirsty’s decision to carry out a sleep trial. Monitoring and assessing our own sleep patterns in order to fully understand what truly goes on in the middle of the night.

The study of sleep is fairly new, due to researchers only recently figuring out a way to monitor and analyse sleep cycles. What we do know, however, and have done for hundreds of years, is that sleep needs vary according to age, lifestyles and health.

Sleep Cycle, the App, downloadable to iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, incorporates your daily routine with a ’Sleep notes’ mini questionnaire to fill out just before you shut those eyes:

•    Drank coffee                                    
•    Drank tea
•    Ate late
•    Worked out
•    Stressful day  

You then set a half hour window for a soft calming alarm to slowly bring you out of your deep sleep in time for your personal alarm to wake you and set you up for the day.  And guess what…IT WORKS!

Everyone loves the idea of being able to monitor their own sleep cycle, however, after speaking to several others about whether it affected them positively or negatively, the main response was that it in turn became so addictive that they were waking up throughout the night to have a ‘quick look’ at how well they were sleeping. Not.the.plan.


Kirsty's view:
“It was really quite funny what this little experiment did for me. Primarily, I noticed how conscious I became about my sleep. Usually I am either dragged into bed (after I have fallen asleep on the sofa) or I wake up with my head on my Macbook air. This week, I became conscious of when I was going to bed and getting an “early night”. This was super good.

The other noticeable difference was how bad I slept! Granted, there is a lot going on at this moment in time however I am very much my fathers daughter (he fell asleep on a push bike going up a hill) and can sleep anywhere and sleep well. What I found myself doing was waking up, checking my app and then tossing and turning again and then either falling asleep again or getting up as I could not get back to sleep.

What will I take from this?
Get to bed earlier, having that routine and intention really helped me. A lot. “

The graphs below show one of our good and bad nights sleep.

1. A Good Sleep

2. A Bad Sleep

3. A Possible Death!

 

So, shall we continue on our quest of sleepdom? Yes, well I will. I think Kirsty will be ensuring she gets to bed – at some point – and we shall watch this space…. Zzzzzzzzzz  

“Sleeping is my drug. My bed is my dealer and my alarm clock is the police”

~Anon

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