I sleep too much! I want to sleep less - You might have told these sentences quite often without getting any success. The problem has mental, physical, spiritual and social aspects. Let us explore them and find permanent solutions.
Setting up the sleep hours
Knowing the target is very important. If we can fix the target in numbers, it really helps to better aim at the target. There are many researches that show that sleeping for less than six hours is not good for health for many.
So, minimum target should be six hours sleep. Many people may find six hours sleep insufficient. But it is better to aim at a difficult target so that at least we can settle for – 6 -7 hours of sleep. and the eluding six hours sleep target keeps the urge to sleep less alive.
An Idol To Follow
Usually Real Spiritual Gurus, your successful role models sacrifice sleep to achieve success.
If you are a cricket fan, here’s a real story for you – During his school days, Sachin Tendulkar went to an inter-school tournament. On the match day, at 3 a.m, the team coach, Mr Ramakant Achrekar heard sound from the top floor. When he went to check what’s happening, Tendulkar was throwing the ball against the wall and was practicing sweep shot.
All successful people that you know, sacrifice sleep to gain success.
Deep interest, love and passion in what you do
By whichever words I explain it, how hard I may try, I can not beat my master – Mr Steve Jobs. Listen him here
A definite goal to reach
Okay, that you have fixed six hours as your target. But that alone might not be enough to keep you motivated throughout the day. You need to set physical goals to achieve, to make the most of your day.
Short term goals
- To finish all the homework
- To master ten dance steps a day
- To practice 1000 cricket shots a day
- To learn 10 new food recipes a day
- To finishing reading a particular book
Long term goals
- To become the best and most useful housewife ever
- To construct most innovative building ever, as an engineer
- To be the best and most productive manager in the office
- To be the best student in the state
- To be the best dancer ever
- To own that dream house with a swimming pool
- To drive that BMW
- To become CEO
If you have these kind of goals, then there are chances of disappointment but it is better to aim at something, rather than wandering purposeless.
- As a doctor, to spread health everywhere.
- As an actor, to make sure that the audience have best relaxing and exciting entertainment, ever.
- As a housewife, to be the most selfless and helpful member of the family.
These goals help to bring satisfaction in what you do, but still keep you hungry for more.
Fit body - The first prerequisite for you to sleep less and work more is maintaining a well nourished and fit body.
Try incorporating these nourishing food stuff in your diet - Milk, Ghee, raisins, amla (chyawanprash, amla juice), sugarcane juice, meat soup, cereals and pulses, protein rich diet, aloe vera juice.
Correct posture – Try to sit straight as far and as long as possible. It helps to improve concentration and keeps you alert.
Seating arrangement – Make sure that your seating arrangement is good enough to keep you free and relaxed while you concentrate on your work / study.
Lighting - Not too bright not too dark. Room – neat and tidy. A healthy environment will force you to be more productive and less sleepy.
Light but satisfied stomach – If the stomach is full, then it drives you sleepy, if it is empty, it will make you tired. Eating light food and keeping stomach light is basic need to control sleep.
Pranayama and Yoga - Prayer and meditation helps to keep your body and mind fit and focussed.
Coffee / tea - See if a little cup of coffee can push you for half an hour more. Many can push sleep further with half a cup of tea or coffee at night.
Avoid these things that makes you sleep more
No aerated drinks, smoking, alcohol, no too heavy oily, too much non veg, too spicy food stuff. It helps to maintain good stomach health. Stomach health is critical for alertness and activeness.
No exercise in evening - being awake burns calories. Exercise in the morning is better than in evening. It makes you less tired. Read how.
Too bright computer screen - strained eyes will drive you straight to bed.
Avoid direct Sun – It strains the brain and mind. If you have to go out, consider wearing a hat or taking an umbrella with you.
Watching TV /Facebook for long hours – We are not talking here about sleeping less and wasting time all through the day, right?
Do not over exercise – If you are over exercising, and if it is causing excess tiredness, consider reducing the exercise time a bit.
Do not be lenient with your mind
When you try to drive your mind towards productivity and positivity, it drives you on the other direction. “Not today man, how about tomorrow?”
“Ah! I am too tired to continue more today.”
“Huff! I am working very hard now, need to slow down a bit”
But be little lenient with your body
Watch for these symptoms, if you have them, may be, you need to go a little easy. - Headache, dizziness, body pains, vomiting sensation, feeling drowsy all through the day, feeling heavy.
Your efforts to sleep less should not push the sleep to the next day.
A few more power tips
Try cold water bath
Cold water bath is stimulative and hot water bath is relaxing. However the decision on this issue is often person-specific. Read more
Organized mind and organized work
Try to organise the work and schedule it properly.
At every point of time in a day, you should be knowing what you will be doing for next 4 – 5 hours.
Do not over target your short term goals
Like, if you are aiming to read 1000 pages a day, you may fail repeatedly and this repeated failure may cause mental fatigue and force you to give up.
Get treatment for your illness
Make sure that your illness does not come in between you and power-packed, super-productive days.
Think about your competition
Whenever you feel drowsy and lazy, just think about your competitor (your colleague, classmate) burning the midnight oil while you are finding comfort with your pillow. That kind of jealousy is positive.
Relax a bit on Sunday
While you crush the six days, have a couple of relaxing hours on Sunday.
An oil massage at Sunday is quite necessary to keep your mind toned and relaxed.
In Ayurveda terms, restricting your sleep to wokr more tends to increase it Vata. And oil massage is best to balance Vata.
Wear lose cloth past office hours
Helps to keep the body relaxed while you concentrate on your work on evening hours.
Three home remedies to sleep less
Take a teaspoon of Triphala powder, add a little honey to it, make it a paste and swallow it with warm water. Do this morning or evening, only once a day for about 15 days.
Rose water – Whenever you feel strained eyes, like, after working for long at night, or coming home in afternoon, Dip two cotton swabs in rose water, close your eyes and keep the swabs over the lids. This helps in quick relaxation.
Lemon juice – More sour, less sweet, helps to keep you alert all through the day.
Power nap – There are certain section of people, and seasons, for whom, nap is must. A quick nap of 10 – 15 minutes, pre-fixed with an alarm clock recharges your engine. Read more about day sleep.
Pinch / punch yourself – Whenever you feel lazy, gently hurt yourself, or do 5 push ups. This helps to gush your brain with oxygen rich blood and keeps you awake.
All the above tips may not apply to you, pick the once that suits you, get rid of excess sleep hurdle and reach the pristine heights in whatever you do the best.
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