So the other day I was kicking back at home surfing the web and I came across a Youtube video of one of my favorite motivational speakers addressing a room full of young business professionals and something this world-renowned speaker said really stuck out to me. I mean, to say that this speaker was delivering a BRILLIANT speech would be quite an understatement, but it was just this one sentence that he spoke that really made me sit back and think. During his AMAZING (and I do mean AMAZING) speech he briefly touched on the (debatable) importance of sleep. I use the term “debatable” because over the years I’ve learned that for some reason a lot of people believe that sleep is actually a luxury (afforded by the wealthy) and not a necessity (needed by everyone).
So as I’m watching my speaker do his thing, he suddenly pauses and asks the crowd to pay attention to what he’s about to say next because it might arguably be the single deciding factor that would separate them from achieving unlimited success or realizing agonizing failure. And that deciding factor was:
Their Unwavering Willingness To Give Up Sleep
Yup you read that right. According to this revered motivational guru, SLEEP, or their willingness to do without it, would determine how successful they would be in their individual pursuits. As soon as I heard him say this I immediately knew that one of two things were absolutely true. Either I had been lied to my entire life by my doctors, teachers, and parents about the importance of a good night’s rest OR my favorite speaker (through no fault of his own) had been grossly misinformed about the potential dangers of sleep deprivation.
How Much Sleep Does Your Body Need?
Let’s start off by first defining what’s considered “Sleep”.
By definition sleep is a condition of body and mind that typically recurs for several hours every night, in which the nervous system is relatively inactive, the eyes closed, the muscles relaxed, and consciousness is practically suspended.
All that’s just a fancy way of saying that to sleep is literally to rest. And we all know that rest is what you’re body needs in order to fully operate at a productive level which completely goes against sleep myth number one which states:
SLEEP MYTH #1: Only The Rich Can Afford To Sleep:
Now if this isn’t just about the most ABSURD thing I’ve ever heard! And yet I hear it being repeated over and over again. “I can’t afford to sleep” or “I’ll sleep when I’m dead”, and the incredibly popular ” Sleep is for the rich, and if you’re not rich then you shouldn’t be sleeping!”. REALLY???
For some strange reason, plenty of folks out there believe that only those of us who are financially well-off deserve to treat their bodies to a good night’s rest. And I’m here to tell you that’s some BULLSH*T. EVERYONE deserves the opportunity to recharge their batteries and get some much-needed rest at night (or day for those of you working evenings).
Keep in mind that sleep experts say most adults need between seven and nine hours of sleep each night for optimum performance, health, and safety. When we don’t get the proper amount of sleep, we accumulate a sleep debt that can be difficult to “pay back” if it becomes too big. The resulting sleep deprivation has been linked to health problems such as obesity and high blood pressure, negative mood and behavior, decreased productivity, and safety issues in the home, on the job, and on the road.
SLEEP MYTH #2: The Older You get, The Fewer Hours of Sleep You Need:
Sleep experts recommend between seven to nine hours of sleep a night for the average adult. Although sleep patterns change as we age, the amount of sleep we need generally doesn’t. Older folks may find themselves waking up more frequently through the night and may actually get less nighttime sleep, but their sleep need is no less than younger adults. Because they may sleep less during the night, older people tend to sleep more during the day. Planning a nap as part of a regular daily routine can be really useful in keeping your body charged up and ready to go.
SLEEP MYTH #3: Obesity, Diabetes & depression are unrelated to the amount and quality of a person’s sleep:
Studies have found a relationship between the quantity AND quality of a person’s sleep and many health problems. For example, not getting the right amount of sleep affects growth hormone secretion that is linked to obesity; as the amount of hormone secretion decreases, the chance for weight gain increases. Blood pressure usually falls while you sleep, however, interrupted sleep can seriously affect this, leading to hypertension and breathing problems. Research also shows that insufficient sleep impairs the body’s ability to use insulin, which can lead to the onset of diabetes. More and more scientific studies are showing correlations between poor and insufficient sleep and disease.
Think about it, would you leave your car running all week without turning it off and what exactly do you think would happen to this car if you did? I’ll tell you what would happen- – – eventually the car would run out of gas and shut itself down, much like what would happen to your body if you tried to go a week without sleep. Your body would eventually “run out of gas” and shut itself down as well. Matter of fact, there’s a name for this very action – — it’s called exhaustion which by definition is “extreme weakness or fatigue“.
Why would you want to put your body through that? And for those of you who work out, you do know when your body does it’s most growing, right? Yep, you guessed it. While you’re sleeping!
While you sleep your body repairs all those muscles and fibers you spent countless hours in the gym tearing down and rebuilds them bigger and better than ever, but that can’t happen if you don’t give it time to rest.
Speaking of which, it’s getting closer to that time to where I need to catch up on a bit of rest myself so I’m going to bid you guys farewell, but first, I just want to say thanks again for stopping by and I hope you guys found this bit of information useful!
But before I go, as a thank you for taking the time out and reading through this entire post I’ve decided to compile a short and sweet list of 5 scientifically proven things you can do to SLEEP SMARTER ensuring you get a good night’s rest. Click the pic below and I’ll get it sent right over to you!
Until next time……