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Dead Tired with Mr. C

By Retta Karpinski

In response to Mr. C’s outrageous value system that perpetuates his lack of sufficient sleep.

2019 January 16

“How many hours of sleep did you get last night?” Chances are, you’ve heard this question before. Most of the time you can’t remember, so you embellish in one direction or the other. You roll your eyes and tell yourself: Life gets in the way. I stayed up late. But I’m here and I’m functioning, aren’t I? In most cases, sleep is just something to forfeit in the busy lives we lead--we get enough of it anyways. What’s one more hour? Two? Suddenly it’s 3 AM and you’re hating yourself. You wake up at 6:00, 6:25, 7:20, or whenever you have to get up and go to school and then you just exist; you follow the routine, tread to all your classes, say “Hi” to the right people, do that awkward half-smile to the others. You doubt and stress, and subsist on the stale air of classrooms until you finally get home, fall onto the couch and close your eyes in glorious resignation. This is your body telling you that you must sleep! But you know this. Sleeping is the easy part. The hard parts are falling asleep, getting yourself to sleep at a consistent time, and convincing yourself of the importance of 8 hour unconsciousness. So let me help you.

The Perks of Sleep: If You Need Convincing

Sleep helps you lose weight.

Sleep strengthens the disease-fighting immune system.

Sleep increases your energy and productivity (i.e. more quality hours in the day).

Sleep leads to a more productive, more inspired, more joyful life.

Sleep increases your creativity.

The Pitfalls of Staying Awake: To Reinforce the Idea

Sleep deprivation increases stress.

Sleep deprivation increases your chance of getting into a car accident.

Sleep deprivation increases your blood pressure.

Sleep deprivation decreases your focus, your memory, and other cognitive abilities.

Do you know ⅓ of all US adults suffer from sleep deprivation? One reason for this epidemic is the social competition that occurs when people brag about how little sleep they got the night before. This is spurred on by our increasingly stress-inducing culture of one-up-ing others in productivity and importance.

In order to live up to our full potential, we must learn how to go to sleep earlier. It will take self-discipline and won’t be an easy adjustment (like adjusting to a new time zone) but it is necessary to be happier, to feel more fulfilled and creative, and to live longer, healthier, and with confidence.

A few ways to get your sleep schedule (and quality of sleep) on track is to set a routine and stick to it. Moreover, avoid caffeine, long naps, and sleeping pills. Also, don’t beat yourself up if you miss by a few minutes; ruminating will only keep you awake longer. To fall asleep faster, try hiding your clock, eating dinner by candle light, or turning off screens an hour before bedtime. Seriously, it works.

Hopefully, you’ve learned the benefits of sleep, the drawbacks of sleep deprivation, and what you can do to stick to your routine and make sleeping so easy you could do it with your eyes closed. I’m intrigued to see Mr. C’s counter-argument. That is, if he gets enough sleep to write a coherent one.

Jan 18, 2019 3:54am

Dear Retta,

I thought it would be most appropriate to respond to your Sleepist Manifesto at an appropriate time - like at 3:52 in the morning. Your arguments are all appreciated, and I know that you have my (and every other insomniac's) best interests at heart, but I think I'll respond to your diatribe with a simple response.

I'll sleep when I'm dead.

P.S. Death before decaf.


Mr. C


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