There are so many of us walking around with endless list of things to achieve and do.

We are A-types, Go-getters, Do-ers. Here I will tell you the single most important thing you need to do. DO SLEEP. 

Give it a thought, how is your sleep? How many hours a sleep do you get each night? Un-interrupted, deep sleep. Sleep deprivation is growing and unfortunately it’s growing faster among teenagers – according to study by Oxford professor Russel Foster, more than half of British teenagers may be sleep deprived*. Be good to yourself, be an example to the younger generations, and understand the importance of sleep, encourage it to your family, friends and your colleagues. DO SLEEP. That is 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night.

Why?

As Dr.Michael Rozen from Cleveland Clinic, put it “Sleep is the most underrated health habit.”

Many people are proud of how little they sleep as they are busy people and their work is important.  They believe they are successful, productive people because they get so much done. But, understand this: you are what is most important. Take care of yourself first, then choose to dedicate efficient loving time to what you wish: family, friends, and career.

Arianna Huffington, as a sleep evangelist, has many great quotes from Doctors and leaders of the world in her book Thrive, on the importance of sleep. One is from Drs. Stuart Quan and Russell Sanna, from Harvard Medical School “Sleep deprivation negatively impacts our mood, our ability to focus, and our ability to access higher level cognitive functions: the combination of these factors that is what we generally refer to as mental performance.”

Productivity, creativity, confidence, ability to make decisions are all affected by enough sleep. Dr. Dan Siegel, clinical professor of psychiatry at the UCLA School of Medicine, explains it greatly;

“ Sleep allows your active neurons cells to rest but more than that, the supportive cells are cleaning up the toxins that the neurons produce. If you don’t get 7-9 hours of sleep – the toxins remain there for over 95% of people. It then makes your attention falter, memory gets impaired, ability to think through problems is challenged and even your insulin, that regulates your metabolism, turns upside down which leads you to eat more and gain weight. Most importantly it is toxic to the connection in the cells of your brain. So, prioritise sleep.” **

Be conscious of your sleep routine. Don’t crash, then start running around the next day high on caffeine. Actively improve your sleep.

Remember, sleep is a healer, and there are many ways you can work on improving your sleep habit. Suggestions will be with you next week. DO SLEEP, and sleep well.

Resources: *Thrive by Arianna Huffington ** Business Insider, Feb 17, 2015 produced by James Gmoser