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TIP-Using Sleep to Improve Your Cognition

We all know that we need sleep for rejuvenation and many of us skip it –like breakfast. I know that since I was a teen, that I needed a solid 9 hours of sleep before I could function, then I popped out like a pop-tart ready to meet the day head on. I still do. I insist on it.

Matthew Edlund, author of The Power of Rest states that, “You need REM sleep and deep sleep to learn, and perhaps around seven to eight hours total to prevent heart disease, stroke, depression, and infections, all of which can really mess up brain function.” Along with food, water, sex, chocolate, and wine, rest and sleep is required for your survival. Okay, so I added chocolate and wine, but this creative knows how to feed her mojo. 😉

Every sleep-deprived animal eventually dies.” Edlund continues. “If you know what you’re doing, like adding predreaming to your presleep rest time, you can improve brain function and make sleep fun.” I know I don’t want to prematurely die, I’ve got too much to do. The thing is, many of us are slowly killing ourselves without realizing it. We think we can get by with a half-assed effort of sleep but then can’t figure out why we didn’t have the reflex to get out of the way of the oncoming car like we would have last week. That happened to me.

Lack of sleep not only kills us slowly, driving while falling asleep at the wheel kills us head on. It’s tiring to hear others tell us gently that we should get more sleep. It’s even more annoying when they continue to tell us to get sleep. Why do we ignore them? They only care. Perhaps we’re not giving ourselves the permission to stop being hero?

I’m giving you permission now. Stop playing hero. 😉

Edlund noted that one working mom holding 2 jobs and raising a 2 year old was completely stressed, tired, and frazzled. Even as an entrepreneurial DINK, I have felt as drained and zapped as she. Once she ‘decided’ to rest one entire weekend, read: no work, just sleep, she felt rejuvenated brimming with new ideas and energy. It’s transformative. Simply an awakening we didn’t know could occur with simply shutting the World out and opening ourselves to REM.

So, have you lost your creative mojo? When was the last time you had energy? Perhaps it’s time you carved out a little solo R&R for Monday morning, eh?

One last tip: Try not to do any administrative technical stuff like coding just before nodding off, you may find yourself tossing and turning for the next 90 minutes. I found this out the hard way. You might practice decompressing the last 90 before the land of nod. I usually schedule what time I’m heading to bed and force myself to walk away from the computer -it’s tough, but it will be there tomorrow. 😉

Have a nice weekend!

Here’s to Cultivating Your Creative Independence
Lisa

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Lisa Stewart
CREATIVEGoddess, Design Entrepreneur, Guide for INDIECreatives.com; Huge Pet Advocate; Lover of Wine, Food, Travelling, Tech & Laughing. Dreamy & Practical.

One Response to “TIP-Using Sleep to Improve Your Cognition”

  1. Jeanne Rhea says:

    I need my sleep. In fact, I do not function without my sleep—eight hours a night. I no longer feel guilty with saying I must get my sleep. I think back on the days when I would often work continuously for 24+ hours. Some of those experiences are a fog and I wonder if I would not have done much better to have insisted on eight good hours of sleep.

    I’m going to post to Facebook and tell Jodi that she needs to come and read this. That girl reminds me of myself when I was younger. Work, work, work. Not that I think she will go to bed early…

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