Friday, January 8, 2010

Happiness Project: Energy & Sleep

I'm following along on Gretchen Rubin's Happiness Project challenge. Here's my third installment:

First, just let me say that I promise there will be more fiber-related posts here soon enough. It's just that I am thoroughly enjoying my little Happiness Project right now, as well as some other self-improvement related items, and I have a tendency to get just a tad focused from time to time. Going forward, I think I'll probably post on this topic once a week...but in the meantime:

This week's Challenge was getting more sleep. As it happened, a few weeks ago I read a sample chapter of The Happiness Project online, and decided right then that I really needed to try enforcing a bedtime on myself. I frequently find myself up roaming around, surfing the internet, flicking TV channels, reading, or sewing until midnight or 1 am, which makes getting up in the morning for work beyond painful. And (thank God for Gretchen Rubin making me feel like I wasn’t totally alone in this), I also put off going to bed because I just don’t want to take out my stupid contacts, even when they get so uncomfortable I want to scratch out my eyeballs. Consequently, I spend most days in a fog, dragging myself from home to work and back again.

Given that most nights I don’t get home until 7, an 11 pm bedtime seemed the most realistic to shoot for. Initially, I went to bed at 11 but couldn’t fall asleep, so I surfed the internet in bed using my Blackberry until I got sleepy. After a few nights of this, I actually began falling asleep fairly quickly; in fact, I can now barely manage to read a few pages of a book before I’m asleep. There have been a few nights where I’ve even managed to go to bed at 10:30, nothing short of a miracle for me.

I’m still having problems staying asleep, though. Certainly having this bad cold did not help one bit, as it is one of those colds where every time you lay down to sleep you immediately start coughing up phlegm (sorry, TMI). But some of this is also the cat’s fault – he has suddenly taken up yowling in my face at 4:30 in the morning, for no apparent reason (he is on a special dry-food diet and I fill his food and water bowls before I go to bed). I’ve tried shutting him out of the bedroom at night, but that just makes him mad: he’ll go into the bathroom and start banging the cabinet door under the sink, which makes an unbelievably loud ruckus. (Seriously, it’s astounding what this cat can do without opposable thumbs.)

On the upside, I do feel like the earlier bedtime is helping me, mainly because I am having an easier time actually waking up in the morning, and I feel much more alert during the day. I still get tired in the afternoon, but it’s not as bad as before.

The downside is, I also feel like I’m getting less done – less reading, less sewing, less knitting, less writing, less guitar practicing (otherwise known as the things that make me stay just this side of sane). I haven’t quite decided how to remedy this, although it did occur to me that ever since getting my Blackberry I spend my train rides surfing the internet, and maybe that’s not such a productive use of that time (I now thoroughly understand why they are called Crackberries). I also need to be better about using my weekends, which tend to get filled up with errands....which, alas, is exactly the state of affairs for the next two days. But I am determined to get some sewing done this weekend, so I hope to have something to share in that area very soon!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Completely understand the 'cat' thing. Never lock a cat out of a room..they only want in -even more!-. Hee Hee. Also, there aren't enough hours in the day for fun stuff, I agree 100%.