Bass Harbor Head Light – Maine – USA (by Scott Kublin) 

Bass Harbor Head Light – Maine – USA (by Scott Kublin

Sleep Debt: Do You Have It?

There is no such thing as catching up on sleep.

Although a lot of people think that they are effectively catching up on sleep, in reality, they are just compromising their health.

Most people need 7 hours of sleep each night at minimum, with 8 hours being the most recommended. Unfortunately, a large number of people get less than 6 hours of sleep each night, according to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine.

Sleep deprivation can cause problems with memory and attention span. It can weaken your immune system, prevent your body from fighting infections, and even cause you to gain weight.

If these things don’t sound too good to you, then read on to know if you have sleep debt and what you can do about it.

Stages Of Sleep

stages of sleep

According to the National Sleep Foundation, the normal stages of sleep are:

  • Stage 1 – transition from wake to sleep
  • Stage 2 – light sleep
  • Stage 3 – beginning slow wave sleep
  • Stage 4 – deep slow wave sleep
  • Stage 5 – rapid eye movement sleep

Your body typically cycles through these stages from start to finish and then starts over at the beginning. During these stages of sleep, several things happen.

The first two stages are when creativity, intuition, and emotion are at their strongest. This is the time where you experience relaxation and your mood becomes balanced once again.

Stages 3 and 4 are the phases where your body, including your central nervous system, undergo physical recovery from the day’s activities. Your immune system is regulated here and this is, most often, the stage that gets cut short when you miss sleep.

The last stage, REM sleep, is when your mind is most lucid. In this phase, when you dream, your mind solidifies it into memories. This stage is crucial to your learning and skill-building abilities. Because these things are all crucial to your daily life, it’s important that you don’t miss them in your sleep.

See Also: Get Strong, Sleep, Repeat: The Importance Of Sleeping

Keep A Routine

sleep routine

Sticking to a schedule, even on the weekends, is the best way to prevent problems related to sleep deprivation. Go to sleep and wake up at the same time every day for optimal sleep health.

If certain factors make it difficult for you to get to sleep, you can try creating a more favorable environment. You can use a sleep mask and a pair of earplugs to block out light and sounds. There are many different things you can do to optimize your sleep.

If you do find yourself in a “sleep debt”, allow yourself weeks or even months to make up for it. The longer you are awake, the longer your body needs to be in slow-wave sleep to make up for it. Eventually, if you keep the same schedule, your body will find it easy to sleep and wake up on time.

Sleeping 12 hours on Saturday may sound like a good way to make up for some serious sleep debt. Unfortunately, that can actually be quite counterproductive. When you sleep for more than ten hours at a stretch, your cognitive abilities tend to get lower than if you had not slept at all.

Parents are all too familiar with this problem. Take, for example, babies. It can take parents several months after their baby is born before they can fully adopt a healthy sleeping schedule.

See Also: Five Ways of Overcoming the Problem of Getting Sleep

Being free from sleep debt is crucial to your mental, emotional, and physical health. If you want to stay productive and healthy, make sure to get the right amount and quality of sleep.

You Can

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Feldman Architecture Designs a Spacious Country Home in Healdsburg, California

This home, located in Healdsburg, California, USA, was designed by Feldman Architecture. Located in a rural area, and at the top of a hill from where we can enjoy the wonderful views over the valley, it was designed with a focus on the enjoyment and relaxation of those who live in it. The property has a swimming pool surrounded by a large terrace, itself equipped with outdoor furniture, and from where..


A Strange Australian Masterpiece via @newyorker

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March 31st

I think; therefore I am.

Here’s how to protect your internet browsing data now that it’s for sale

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10 Ways to De-stress Your Mind and Body

You’re reading 10 Ways to De-stress Your Mind and Body, originally posted on Pick the Brain | Motivation and Self Improvement. If you’re enjoying this, please visit our site for more inspirational articles.

Many people know that stress is the leading killer of adults in the United States… but even a statement as strong as that one may not properly convey what a serious issue this really is. According to a study conducted by the American Institute of Stress, an incredible 44% of Americans say that they feel more stressed today than they did just five years ago. One out of every five people say that they regularly experience “extreme stress” – the symptoms of which include shaking, heart palpitations, depression and more. Work-related stress alone causes an unforgivable 10% of all strokes each year.

But the key to solving this epidemic involves more than just acknowledging that stress is a bad thing. You must first understand that stress is a two-headed enemy – one that affects your MIND as well as your BODY. Stress tends to come at you from all angles, so you’ll need to be equally vigilant in your approach to combating it if you want to rid it from your life as much as possible.

Your Battle With Stress Begins Now

The first thing you must do as you begin to work on stress-related issues is properly identify where they’re coming from. Everyone is a little bit different – what one person considers to be a stressful situation at work may just be “Tuesday” to someone else. Because of this, you’ll want to start by first identifying the things throughout your day that trigger stress.

Only by understanding how stress uniquely manifests itself in your life can you really come to terms with the extent of the problem you’re dealing with. Once you’ve identified the rules of the game you’re actually playing, you can begin to work towards that critical balance once and for all.

Along the same lines, it is of paramount importance that you understand stress is not something you can ever truly remove from your life – that’s not what you’re trying to do. If work predominantly causes the stress in your life, the easy answer is to say “quit your job” – but you can’t really do that, can you? Instead, you need to understand what causes stress so that you can adjust your own reaction to it. You’ll never be able to have a completely stress-free work experience (this is why it’s called “work” and not “happy fun time”). Only by acquiring this context will you be able to get started doing what is right for you.

As you work to de-stress your mind and body, one helpful thing that can often help accomplish both at the same time is a little good, old-fashioned exercise. Stress often manifests itself physically, be it in the form of heart palpitations or a sudden pain in your neck that just won’t go away. When this happens, making a POSITIVE physical reaction can be a great way to mitigate the issue. Drop down on the floor in your office and do a couple of push-ups. Go for a jog on your lunch break instead of sitting in your car and listening to the radio.

Do something – anything – physical to combat stressful reactions. Not only can it help clear your head and remove the weight of the world from your shoulders, but if you get into this habit enough you can also help prevent similar reactions from arising in the future. You’ll also go a long way towards improving your overall health if you prioritize exercise, which is very much a good thing on its own.

These are just a few of the essential tips you’ll learn about in the following Infographic, appropriately titled “10 Ways to De-Stress Your Mind and Body.” Created with Visme, it’s an invaluable resource that you can use to not only remove stress from your day, but to cut it out of your life wherever you can. You need to understand that there is no magic bullet when it comes to defeating stress. It’s not like you can flip a light switch and suddenly you’ll be relaxed and calm 100% of the time. As with most things, it’s often a series of small-yet-critical steps that, when taken together, add up to a pretty powerful whole.


Payman Taei is the founder of Visme, an easy-to-use online tool to create engaging presentations, infographics, and other forms of visual content. He is also the founder of HindSite Interactive, an award winning Digital agency specializing in website design, user experience and web app development.

You’ve read 10 Ways to De-stress Your Mind and Body, originally posted on Pick the Brain | Motivation and Self Improvement. If you’ve enjoyed this, please visit our site for more inspirational articles.

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