Thursday, February 19, 2015

Sleep, the energizer

I would like to sleep on it. Have you anyone say so? I have heard this countless times. On many occasions, the response left me aghast. How could you talk about sleeping when we are staring at a disaster? That sums up my reaction although I mostly didn't express it in such blunt terms. Now I am older, not necessarily wiser, I have better sense to question this behavior. Does sleep help?

According to experts, sleep is essential because of three processes that take place during our sleep. The three processes are unitization, assimilation, and abstraction. If you are wondering what these big words mean, have you seen science fiction movies where computer plays the main villain? This villainous concoction of hardware and software can connect events and experiences to derive new meanings that make it more powerful as the plot progresses. Our mind behaves the same way during sleep. Our mind analyzes what we have encountered so far, interprets it in different ways and finally forms new associations. If we oversimplify the whole process, our mind is constantly evolving during sleep.

Unfortunately, we do not give importance to sleep. In fact, we sacrifice sleep with the slightest hesitation. David K Randall, a sleep expert and an author, talks about sleep. 
While we'll spend thousands on lavish vacations to unwind, grind away hours exercising and pay exorbitant amounts for organic food, sleep remains ingrained in our cultural ethos as something that can be put off, dosed or ignored. We can't look at sleep as an investment in our health because - after all - it's sleep. It is hard to feel like you're taking an active step to improve your life with your head on a pillow.
I have learned my lesson. I am no longer surprised if someone says they want to sleep before making a decision. They will be able to make a better decision if they get time to unitize, assimilate and abstract.

Tags: Musings, Sleep

4 comments:

  1. Unfortunately, we do not give importance to sleep.well said

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    1. Another mistake of ours. We try to sleep less for couple of days and try to catch up on sleep on the third day. This is also unhealthy.

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  2. When I heard someone say "Sleep over it and come back to me", I was as surprised as you were. Then I realized that sleeping over an issue or a question at hand, gives better rational solutions than impulsively acting over it.
    Great post!

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    Replies
    1. Sleep gives you are different perspective for these questions because of the three important processes. After the sleep, the mind is able to draw different (and mostly the right) conclusions.

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