For energy, it's the same thing. It's obvious that I won't be at my best when I'm sick (as noted in my last newsletter) but what about those times where I'm hungry, feeling busy, worried, distracted, tired, or lethargic from sitting too much? What are the consequences of those not-so-obvious energy drains?
It can be a really interesting experiment to start monitoring your life since what gets measured gets managed. If you don't know, how can you know?
There are several foundations of energy management that are important to take a look at with my clients, even if it's not their primary reason for working with me. If they're not well resourced in their energy, how can they activate the energy to optimize their hopes and dreams?
Today we’re going to take a peak at #1... sleep. Why sleep? If you're not getting adequate quality sleep, it's nearly impossible to have any positive impact on any area of your life. You tend to eat carbage and sugary foods for energy, over-caffeinate to stay awake, and don't have the organic energy to move freely and with joy in your body. Plus, those nasty gremlins take the bait and run amock with your attitude, focus, and psyche!! After a rough day like that, good luck getting a good night’s sleep... which leads to a continuation of that ill-being cycle.
Sleep is the number one fundamental and the beginning of everything.
How is your sleep? How many hours a night do you get? 7 to 8 hours of restful sleep is the basic prescription; anything under 6 is in the depletion zone. While it might not be as obvious as an all-nighter, that's only because it’s easy to get acclimated to slower / lower functioning and performance, low energy, and sub optimal health.
In his awesome book Why We Sleep, neuroscientist Matthew Walker shares some ugly statistics:
- 4 hours of sleep for 6 days is the same as being awake for 48 hours.
- 5 hours of sleep is like having blood alcohol level of .08.
- 6 hours of sleep is like being awake for 24 hours (the red eye without the flight?).
- Emotional reactivity goes up 60%.
- Learning and memory are reduced by 50% and more mistakes are made (how much of your day do you spend redoing things or correcting simple errors?).
- Spacing out, forgetfulness… 400% lapse in concentration.
- The Geneva Convention prohibits sleep deprivation. It’s considered torture.
Not to fear. There are many simple things you can do including:
- Stop caffeine in the early afternoon (including dark chocolate - OK, that one might not be easy).
- Install a digital sunset = shut electronics and screens off at least one hour before bed. The blue light in the screen messes with your natural production of melatonin, a hormone necessary for balanced sleep cycles.
- Check your room temp: 65° is best and no more than 70°.
- Have a regular bed and wake time, even on the weekends, one that will get you at least 7 hours. This creates sleep cycles that your body will look forward to.
- Stretch and move your body throughout the day, not just at the beginning or end. Get up at least every hour for 2-3 minutes and shake it up!
- Nap… but no more than 30 minutes (I’ll share more on these last two in an upcoming Wonder & Wisdom).
- Track your sleep. Start a journal and notate how you slept the night before and the effect it has on your day today: what you ate, how you moved, your attitude, focus, and energy level. You might be surprised at some connections that would have been invisible before.
Would it be helpful to figure out your particular secret sauce to better sleep? Let's chat!I'd love to help dissect what's working and not working for you. I want you to have your optimal energy available. How else to have your optimal life?
Sending you lots of Zzzzzzs.