It is my opinion that society in general is operating, on a daily basis, under an unprecedented level of exhaustion. Why do I think this? Look and listen to the people around you. How many times a day do you hear someone say, “I’m so tired.” or “Where’s the coffee?” or “I need some caffeine to get through this afternoon.”
Have you watched someone fall asleep sitting up, simply because it was the first moment that day they didn’t have ten urgent things pulling at them, and their eyes became heavy the instant they relaxed? There’s an Instagram moment just waiting to happen!
Image: James Emery via Flickr
Ernest Hemingway observed, “I love sleep. My life has the tendency to fall apart when I’m awake, you know.” Touché! Kids are learning more earlier, adults are achieving more earlier, technology is reaching farther daily, the Internet is controlling us through our computers and holding many captive for hours on end!
Does your spouse begin to snore in ten seconds flat when he collapses on the couch in the evening? Mine does. True story. When my daughter was four, she came into the kitchen where I was cleaning up dinner dishes to announce she could “be just like Daddy” and that I must come see. So as I round the corner, she collapses on the floor, just like Daddy who was sound asleep while doing a puzzle with her, piece still in hand. She then proceeded to make the most hilarious “snoring” sounds I’d ever heard! In perfect unison with her dad!
So what gives? Why are we a country of people so tired, beat, exhausted, spent, weary, burned-out, drained, tuckered, fatigued, worn-out, sluggish, bushed or downright lethargic on a daily basis?
For Pete’s sake, we’re not living on the prairie during pioneer days here. We’re not farming (well, most of us aren’t) or building log cabins or churning butter or walking miles to school or tending the animals or worrying about a dust storm or locust invasion! But they felt the survival stress too, as did Robert Frost in 1922 when he wrote, “The woods are lovely, dark and deep. But I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep.”
We’re so advanced in the twenty-first century that we can be instantly connected with someone halfway around the globe, or called to a meeting that wasn’t on our calendar an hour ago or handed a new client list on a Friday afternoon or texted throughout the weekend or expected to make an appearance at a function or, or, or… Perhaps with all our technological advancements we have walked ourselves right into oblivion, reconstructing our lives with absolutely no “down” time.
Stop the ride, I need to get OFF!
Most adults today probably agree with Robin Sikarwar’s comment, “Sleep is such a luxury, which I can’t afford.” Given the fact that the medical community recommends adults get 7-9 hours of sleep a night, teens 8-10 hours, kids 10-12 hours, and babies 14-18 hours, you would think we, as a society, would make this a priority and view it as the necessity it is! It’s now believed to be a factor in chronic diseases, memory issues, and weight loss.
But alas, the comfy cozy bed is ignored. I’m preaching to myself here too. We climb in bed late at night and tell ourselves, “Tomorrow night, I’ll get some more sleep.” And you know how the next night goes.
But I’m breaking the chain right now and going to bed. Good night, friends! FYI, it’s 11:45pm… oh well, tomorrow night, I’ll get some more sleep.
Do you get enough sleep each night? What your thoughts on the right amount of sleep?
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