Oh, yes….that elusive journey to the Land of Nod. That blissed out state we as adults, especially woman, sometime only witness in babies and puppies.
Sleep is a fundamental biological requirement for all humankind. In fact, Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs lists sleep as one of the basic needs which are inborn in all humans. In this concept Maslow developed in the fifties, the first level, or the “psychological needs” of humans, must be satisfied first. Air, food, water, clothing, sex, shelter, sleep. In other words, if you aren’t taking care of these basics, than you have no hope of working on self-actualization—which is my ultimate goal in the next seventeen months.
An interesting perspective, don’t you agree?
I got the breathing, clothing, and shelter thing down, and now I’ve satisfied my basic need for enough water too. I will need to reevaluate the quality of my food soon enough, but Lord knows I’m not starving, so let’s pick on the basic psychological need that I know I could use improvement on in this journey toward Thinking Healthy Not Thin.
I mean, how can I make any life changing decisions if my brain is foggy from lack-of or irregular sleep?
Well, when I told the dear hubby this was my second month’s goal, he asked me the oh-so-very helpful question, “Why don’t you just go to bed?”
Wow! I never thought of that!
LOL, he’s actually being quite supportive of these goals, even if he doesn’t understand my methodology. Just last week he bought me a Brita water pitcher so I could drink filtered water instead of right from the trap. Side note: I’m still drinking my gallon, and loving it. Some days I even go over! I know, right?
Any who, back to the issue of sleep.
The Sandman and I have never been pals. In fact, sometimes, I think he’s a real motherf***er, sprinkling just enough of his magical sleep dust to make me sleepy, but wickedly withholding enough so that he can watch me toss and turn until five or six am.
When I was a kid growing up in the country, we had a big pole that lit up the driveway out to the barn. Right. Outside. My. Window.
Yeaaaah, I distinctly recall opening my window and screaming next door to my grandma to turn it off at night. Not one of my better moments, but the switch was inside her house, LOL
Even back then, I had a hard time falling asleep, staying asleep and anything else sleep related. When I got married the only way I convinced my husband not to have a TV in our bedroom was because I saw a statistic on Good Morning America that said couples with TVs in their bedroom had 50% less sex than those that didn’t.
As you can imagine, it was a discussion easily won, LOL But he’s still not keen on a wave machine.
But no matter how much I spend on pillows, bedding, black-out curtains, sleep still proves to be an elusive part of my life.
I have to admit, however, that in the last few months I’ve been taking a really great vitamin which has made a colossal improvement in my quality of sleep. It’s called NEW YOU and you can read about it or even buy it here. Use distributor #5100493 to create a loyal customer account if you think it sounds like something that might help you. For me, I heard a girl at work saying it helped her friend sleep soundly for the first time in years, and I was like, “Sign me up now!”
LOL I didn’t even ask how much it was. I’ll try anything to help me sleep.
Melatonin is something I use sometimes, but I find that if I take it too often or take too much I have very trippy dreams. Like weird shit that I recall vividly. I wake up groggy and lost in some acid-trip dream world with murderers and penguins and I’m the puppetmaster of it all. Trust me, I didn’t make that up as an amusing anecdote for this article. It’s really freaky to dream that hard and that real, so now I just reserve a 5mg pill for the first few nights in a hotel. Melatonin is not for me on a regular basis. I will say however, that after three months of taking the NEW YOU pills, my sleep quality has really improved. When I get up for that inevitable 4 am potty break, I can actually fall back asleep.
Talk about a novelty!!!
With this new miracle pill, why do I need to make sleep my goal for month two?
Well, because, I have a creative mind which never seems to turn off, and I do my best writing somewhere between sleep and awake. But I’m also known to get caught up in books or movies at 2 am then go to bed at 5 am and get up at 8. Sometimes I’m canning tomatoes at 3 am, watching Netflix on my iPad. Then the next day I go to bed at 11 with the hubby and get up at 11.
Now as a writer, I don’t want to inhibit my creativity, and I work until 8 pm in the salon several nights a week. All of which means that I’ll never be the ‘go to bed at 10 get up at 6’ kinda gal.
But I do have control over my behavior. There are plenty of things I do, bad habits, which have nothing to do with not being able to sleep once my head hits the pillow. And that is what I am setting out to correct.
This whole process of Thinking Healthy Not Thin is supposed to be life and mind changing, and no one expects any of it to be easy, just attainable. I’m can’t pick a goal willy-nilly without a deeper purpose or losing sight of the end-game. The water was a good foundation to health and while it didn’t seem easy at the time, now when I think about tackling sleep, I feel like I may have bitten off more than I can chew.
But I will prevail.
After all, according to Maslow—shouldn’t we listen to all moldy-oldy shrinks from the fifties? LOL— how can I begin to concern myself with personal development if I’m not meeting my basic needs?
So what’s my plan?
Something that sounds a helluva lot easier than it probably will be.
Go to bed at midnight, read for a half an hour—I refuse to deny myself that luxury!—then set my alarm for eight thirty. In a perfect world, that would give me a full eight hours of sleep.
Even as I type this, there is self-deprecating laughter coming out of my mouth and I’m wondering if I’ll be able to stick with it.
I think I’m ready… I’ve washed my bedding, fluffed my pillows, flipped my mattress—you do know you’re supposed to do that once a month, right? #sleepfreak—I stocked up on my NEW YOU vitamins and I’ll be having a nice glass of water before bed. Warm milk has never been one of my remedies. Yuck! I thought about making a sleep journal, but decided against it because I have a clock and I can plainly see that it’s bedtime.
Ugh, I hate that word. Reminds me of all those times my mom told me that it was past my bedtime. I can still hear her: “Go to bed, it’s past your bedtime. You need more sleep than other kids.”
Hell, maybe she was right. Or maybe I was just never getting good sleep. Who knows?
I might have an answer in a few weeks. All I do know is that I have my work cut out for me.
Can I really get myself on a sleep schedule?
Tune in three weeks from today to find out. I’m sure that I’ll have plenty of roadblocks and issues to report. If you’re a pinner, check out my board Think Healthy Not Thin on Pinterest where I’ll be posting items on this subject throughout the month to keep myself motivated. Or you can just sign up for email subscriptions to my blog in the left column of this page. Feel free to post a comment, I would love to hear from you.
Until then, sweet dreams! Let’s hope those weird ass penguins don’t decide to show up….
Think Healthy Not Thin
One woman’s journey toward thinking healthy not thin