I used to be such a sleepy little thing
‘Til they got a hold of me
I’d get cranky on little old ladies
I was too blind to see
I got no friends ’cause they read the papers
They can’t be seen
With me and I’m gettin’ real shot down
And I’m feelin’ mean
No More Mr. Night Guy
No More Catching Zs
No More Mr. Night Guy
They say he’s sick, he’s obscene
How many times have you burned the midnight oil, just swiping up on your Facebook News feed, or binging on seasons of Game of Thrones and House of Cards, or going through the endless list of suggested images on Instagram? And how many times has that led you into sleeping for an extremely inadequate amount of time at night, only to wake up and grind through the day’s motions in a cranky, sleepwalker(not Whitewalker) way? If your answer to that is ‘every other day’, then this blog is just for you. You might believe that watching Dragons burning up some ships to crisp in Slaver’s Bay, is worth the effort of sleeping fewer hours, but over time, staying awake into the wee hours can come back to haunt you, in your real life. (How can it ever haunt you in your dreams, you need to sleep to dream!) Here are a few surprising ways you can benefit from ditching, or at least minimizing, your habit of staying on through the night.
1. You can get along better with everyone.
Been getting into a lot of arguments lately? There’s one easy way to fix that.
Too little sleep tends to leave people feeling short tempered, irritable and stressed. Which means that little things that might not normally be a big deal can cause you to fly off the handle. The result? More spats and misunderstandings with those around you.
Being well-rested, on the other hand, will help to recalibrate your baseline. You’ll naturally feel more optimistic, patient, and relaxed (even if nothing around you has actually changed), which means you’ll have an easier time coping with all of life’s moodswings.
2. You can have a safer commute.
It’s scary to think about, but sleep deprivation can make you less alert and significantly up your likelihood of getting into a car crash. And tons of us are at risk:
Roughly 60 percent of adult drivers say that they’ve driven a vehicle while feeling drowsy. Even crazier? More than a third say that they’ve actually fallen asleep behind the wheel!!!
According to the Automobile Association of America Foundation Reports, people who sleep 6 to 7 hours are twice as likely to have a car accident compared to those who sleep for 8 hours or more. People who sleep for five hours or less exponentially increase their risk to five times. Go for 24 hours without sleeping, and your skills behind the wheel are the same as someone who is over the legal drinking limits!
3. You can be more productive at work.
You’re sitting at your desk after a super late night, staring blankly at the report that’s due, like now! However, nothing’s happening. That’s because lack of sleep messes with your cognition, making it harder for your brain to perform basic functions like concentrating and remembering
And it’s not just the straightforward stuff that suffers. Lack of REM sleep, the sleep that occurs when you dream, can thwart creative-thinking skills. In fact, one recent study found that subjects performed 30 percent better on a puzzle after waking up from REM sleep than after waking up from non-REM sleep. Research has shown that sleep is essential for helping people solve complex problems, too.
Get your eight hours of sleep, and the brain boost that follows will leave you feeling fresh, focused, and ready to take care of business. Report due at noon? You’re on it.
4. You will have an easier time maintaining a healthy weight.
Research suggest that the less sleep you get, the more likely you are to be overweight or obese. How so? When you’re regularly sleep deprived, you have less energy to exercise or make healthy food choices.
Plus, studies show that the later you stay up, the more you eat: Our body’s internal clocks seem to be hard wired to prefer salty, fatty, or sugary foods after 8 p.m. Which might explain why night owls who stay up until 4 a.m. eat about 550 more calories than early birds who go to sleep at 10 p.m.
So hit the off switch sooner tonight, and for every other night to come. The Dragons and The Underwoods aren’t going anywhere.