You know what’s frightening? The world is losing its ability to sleep.
Over 60 million men, women and children in the United States alone are members of the tossing-and-turning, flipping-through-channels, pacing-the-floor, can’t fall-or-stay-asleep club. Day by day, club membership is growing by leaps and bounds. Odds are that you or someone you love has already, albeit reluctantly, joined.
Why is this so scary?
It’s scary because this chronic lack of sleep is causing a zombification of the population. When you can’t sleep you feel like a blind man stumbling through a never-ending fog.
The sleepless suffer varying degrees of memory loss, slowed reflexes, a reduced capacity to perform even the simplest tasks, loss of coordination that leads to an increased likelihood of fumbling and accidents. No sleep can quickly turn you into a lunatic with out of control mood swings, prone to irritation, impatience, depression and emotional instability. In extreme cases, you can even experience hallucinations.
So we have millions of citizens on this planet, some of them doctors and nurses, ambulance and bus drivers, not to mention guys maneuvering huge eighteen-wheelers through rush hour traffic, who are not firing on all cylinders because they can’t sleep. The sleepless are piloting passenger-filled jumbo jets and serving as conductors on hundred-mile-an-hour commuter trains. They are handling our financial transactions, teaching and caring for our children, deciding our fates in courts of law, policing our cities with fully loaded weaponry, running governments of powerful countries. Bleary-eyed, sleep-deprived people have crashed planes and trains and cars, have left surgical instruments inside of stitched up patients, have dispensed wrong medication, have burned the house down because they forgot they were cooking dinner. A few very unfortunate near comatose ones have left their toddlers strapped into car seats in boiling hot cars all day while they were at work with tragic results because they were so fried they forgot to drop them off at daycare.
Are you scared yet?
We need help.
And I’m not talking some kind of pharmaceutical solution. Thankfully it is not a hopeless situation. We are not doomed to become a planet of listless, dazed and confused crazies wandering mindlessly through a chaotic accident-filled world. If you want to save yourself and your loved ones from this modern plague, then follow the suggestions below, to the letter. If you are consistent you will see results. Ready? Go!
- Get 20 or 30 minutes of exercise every day, preferably out of doors, at least 5 hours before bed.
- Expose yourself to at least 20 minutes of morning sunlight every day.
- Say goodbye to caffeine, nicotine and alcohol. Replace it with at least one-half gallon of clean filtered or spring water a day. (I know, I know. This is a hard one. But it is less painful than becoming a zombie.)
- Shut off your computer, television, cell phone, and tablet at least 3 hours before bed. It is scientifically proven that the blue light and toxic EMF’s they emit are real sleep killers. (This is another hard one, but you can do it. I have faith in you!)
- Move all electronic devices such as radios, digital clocks, and televisions away from your sleeping area. Kick the TV and computer out of the room.
- Turn off or block all artificial light so that the room is dark.
- Make sure the room temperature is slightly cool.
- Go to bed at the same time every night.
- If you can’t sleep don’t just lay there. You will only start to worry and stress over the fact you aren’t sleeping, which will make it even harder to sleep. Get up, go into another room and read or listen to soothing music.
- A warm bath to which you add lavender oil is always a great idea.
- Concentrate on your breath until it becomes deep, slow, regular diaphragmatic breathing.
- Relax. You can utilize visualization to encourage your mind to release thoughts and stress.
- Another extremely effective way to relax is to listen to specific tones with which your mind and body can easily entrain so that you can effortlessly slip from a sympathetic to a parasympathetic state. The parasympathetic state is the Holy Grail of a sleepless nation. This healthy resonance will also encourage your brain waves to drop into Theta, which is the rhythm of the ultimate deep-sleep mind lullaby.
So there you have it: a prescription to protect you from morphing into a zombie. Pass it on.
If you want to learn more about all things sleep related, here are some links for you: