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Think sleep is for wimps? Think again. In fact, its essential to your health.
You may have been taught that sleep is for people who don't want to work too hard. Nothing could be farther than the truth.
We no longer live in the Victorian era. In those days anybody who wanted more sleep was considered "lazy." They were dead wrong. I know too many people who still think like this. Don't listen to them.
Sleep health has only recently been researched. It probably explains why I have shelves of health related books, and none of them talk about sleep. Some medical experts have shown that prolonged sleep deprivation can shorten your life span, and cause other chronic health problems.
Not getting enough sleep may age you faster. If you are that kind of martyr, then you are putting your health at risk. It's not worth it. Also, there are individual differences of sorts, but 8-9 hours a night is recommended.
I have a co-worker who tells me that she only needs four hours a night, and that's why she is able to work night shifts all the time. She looks wonderful, and seems to have no issues. There are always exceptions of course. Most of us aren't that lucky. I believe your body tells you what it needs.
Benefits of more Sleep
According to Harvard researchers and other scholarly articles, sleep heals and repairs your muscles, especially your heart muscle. Lack of sleep over time, can lead to a whole host of chronic health problems including emotional problems. For more information check out the following links:
Yes, we are all in competition for more time in our day. It depends on if you want 'quality' time in your life, or you just want to wing it. If you have a mental job, then lack of sleep over time can lead to decreased mental sharpness and focus. Who wants poor job performance? Get more sleep and you might get that job promotion you've been waiting for.
Sleep is necessary for the learning process. Harvard University researchers say that sleep may help improve the creative process. If your job depends on creativity, then research is in favor of increasing sleep for better performance. If you are like me, noise bothers you, then get some white noise. There are machines you can put by the bedside, and there are app for your phone.
If you want to get fit and strong, you can't do it without sleep. Who doesn't need more energy these days? The amount of sleep you get is co-related to the amount of energy you have each day. If you have kids, you probably need more sleep than you are getting. Good parenting means good sleep and other healthy lifestyle habits.
Remember that sleep is necessary for animals too. Many people don't realize this.
So forget about those notions that your parents and grandmothers had about sleep being for "lazy" people. They were feeding you a bunch of crap (unintentionally). My money is on the science and statistics. I don't know about you, but good sleep makes me feel like a million bucks. Poor sleep also affects your motivation level. You probably won't feel like doing much of anything. It's important not to confuse fatigue with motivation too.
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