I am often tired. This has to do with many things. I work during the day, run around to get tasks around my home done in the evening, and am finishing my Masters degree as well. With all of that going on, it is exhausting. You would probably think that I find my way to dreamland very easily with all of this going on. This, however, is not true.
I had trouble sleeping for a very long time. Not necessarily falling asleep, but having a good sleep. I would often sleep very lightly, and wake up more tired than the night before. I thought that this was just something that I was going to have to deal with. I’d just be that guy who always looks tired, needs midday naps, and be an overall bore. Ugh, who likes that guy?
Luckily, I started to realize what it is that prevents me from sleeping well: overstimulation. I am always on a computer for my job and school both during the day and at night. I am also an avid television and movie fan, so my wife and I had a satellite package, Netflix, Hulu, you name it. I often would also have the television on while I worked. It all got my brain running and churning, and that would carry over to my attempts at good sleep.
After I did a little research, I realized that too much of this type of activity and entertainment was affecting my brain from being able to completely shut down at night. As my mind continued to run, do did my body. After much thought and consideration, not to mention a lot of willpower, I decided that I needed to make a lifestyle change.
Unfortunately, I have to do work at night, so it is hard to put the computer down sometimes. But I have been able to reduce my reliance on television. I typically work with no other distractions around, and indulge in TV only when I’m free. Even then, I try to give myself an hour before bed with no electronic distractions. This gives me the time to power down and get my brain prepared for a full night’s sleep so I can be productive the next day.
It wasn’t easy to make all these changes, especially since they are habits I had been carrying with me for a long time. It has, however, been the best decision I have made for my ability to sleep, sleep well, and be productive during the week. I still exhaust myself with my school and workload, but I no longer feel that I can’t make it up overnight.
Jordan lives with his wife in Moncure, NC. He is also a media professional and content creator, currently writing for Digital Satellite Dish TV.