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Are you getting sleepy… or NOT?
Scott Sulak, BCH, CHT
Sleep problems occur in more than 40% of adults at some period of time in their lives. The average person gets approximately seven hours per night. More than likely you have had one or two nights in your life where you were unable to either fall asleep or stay asleep. We all know how horrible it can feel to be sleep deprived. We get grouchy, have trouble staying focused and most certainly do not feel we are working at our optimum levels, which can have a negative impact on your speaking career. Unfortunately, there are some people who go though long periods of sleep deprivation and it can take its toll in many ways. The direct costs of human fatigue to the American economy are more than $80 billion per year and worldwide over $300 billion!
It is estimated that more than 30% of American drivers admit to having fallen asleep at the wheel at least once in their life. The National Sleep Foundation estimates that more than 100,000 accidents and 1,500 fatalities per year are directly caused by drivers falling asleep at the wheel.
Cause and Effect
The very nature of sleep is to allow your body to slow down, repair itself, let go of daily stress and revitalize the system. Without the proper balancing effects of adequate sleep you will feel one or more of the following symptoms:
- Lack of energy: Perhaps you might even experience energy shifts;. one minute you are fine, and a few minutes later, you feel like you cannot even move. You might wake up tired and feel like you are dragging all day long.
- Mood swings: Being grouchy and irritable is the starting point to sleep deprivation. In prolonged periods, depression or anxiety might set in making it is easy to feel thoroughly overwhelmed.
- Lack of concentration: Your ability to stay focused is impaired when you are not rested resulting in staring into space or making mistakes. Your judgment is greatly affected, which allows for accidents.
- Weight gain: You are more likely to eat incorrectly when you are tired, or eat candy or some quick energy food, which is likely to be filled wit empty calories. Since your energy is lacking, you are less likely to engage in exercise that might otherwise burn it off.
- Immune deficient: Yes, you run yourself down, and you put yourself at a greater risk of getting a cold or flu virus.
Why can’t I get to sleep?
What may be causing your inability to fall asleep or to stay asleep may be a variety of factors. It can range from unresolved or repressed thought, such as past memories; to fears or concerns (failure, success, death, etc.) that needs to be dealt with the next day; perhaps anger over an issue that has yet to be resolved or any number of things. The fact is, the more you try and stop your thoughts, and the more difficult falling asleep might be. Whatever the cause, you will need to resolve the problem or issue, as it more than likely is a message from the subconscious mind that something is wrong. So, listen to your body and subconscious mind and seek a solution rather than medicate yourself to overcome your problem.
Nine tips on getting good restful sleep: