Dreaming is often a valuable tool for artists, designers, and scientists. Whether awake or during sleep, it is an area that can be explored for creativity.
In our busy lives, it is hard to give due attention to sleep and take the time to interpret our dreams. Yet, to forget our dreams is like ignoring money in our bank account at a time of an emergency. Promoting quality of sleep is crucial to improving the creative mindset. The best way to do so is to create small weekly habits that will gradually direct our routine in the right direction, so that we will be in our most creative shape. Studies show that sleep is critical for our moods, minds, and overall health.
We can start with two small steps
that can make a big difference in our lives.
1. SLEEP WELL AND DON'T BE JET LAGGED
Sleep between 7.5 and 8.5 hours (needs are slightly different from one person to another) every night. Dr. Michael Breus, a sleep specialist and author of Good Night: The Sleep Doctor's 4-Week Program to Better Sleep and Better Health, recommends setting a nighttime alarm to ensure that we go to bed on time for 7.5 hours (the average sleep cycle is 90 minutes long, and the average person has five sleep cycles per night).
“Work backwards from your wake-up time,” Breus tells us. “That’s socially determined by when you have to get up to get to work, get the kids ready, all those external factors.” So if you have to get up by 7:00 a.m., count back 7.5 hours and recognize that your bedtime should be 11:30 p.m.
“Follow that bedtime for 10 days in a row,” says Breus, “and you’ll begin, quite naturally, to wake up a few minutes before your alarm clock sounds.”
Consistency is key — that’s how the human circadian system functions best. “Sleeping in on the weekends causes your system to shift and makes you want to go to bed later and wake up later,” he says. By doing so, it's like being jet-lagged every weekend.
2. FALL ASLEEP BEFORE MIDNIGHT IF POSSIBLE.
John Medina, molecular biologist and author of the bestselling book, The 12 Brain Rules recommends that we sleep late on the weekends if we are forced to lose sleep time during the week, but to make sure that this doesn't become a bad habit. Enough sleep every night and regular schedules are essential for a healthy brain. Sleep debts debt is detrimental to our memory and development of our cognitive capabilities. As both doctors explain it, consistency is a key factor for good quality sleep. This should motivate us to change our habits.
This scientific knowledge should also make us revise the way schools and businesses operate. Naps in the afternoon (15 to 20 minutes max), for example, can be used to leverage productivity and creativity.
Building on good sleep is the preliminary foundation for a healthy brain and a creative mind, and using the small-steps method is the best way to transform our resolutions into healthy habits.
TIME TO DEVELOP GOOD HABITS!
To help you to develop this new habit, you can set an alarm in your calendar or your app. Personally, I do it on my Google calendar and it works very well. I receive a notification every night one hour before going to bed. This leaves me time to get ready. Then, when the alarm sounds, I still have 30 minutes to make a list of what I want to accomplish the next day if I haven't had time to do it before and read a book before falling asleep. I have a sleeping log to analyze how well I'm doing which helps me to improve my nightly routine.
And if you find it too difficult to wake up on time, you can use an alarm on wheels to help you to get out of the bed no matter what.... it works very well for students.
NOW YOU TRACK YOUR SLEEPING HABITS!
Download the perfect interactive tool to develop the best sleeping habits. Make your dreams work for you! Take brief notes every morning!
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