Lifestyle · Study

Week Two | The Sleep Experiment

Let’s just say, week 2… not so great. The week started badly and just didn’t get better.

On the Sunday of week one I worked at the races and silly me, forgot to put sunscreen on my back! I then proceeded to work another three hour shift waitressing that night. So come Monday morning, not only was I extremely sunburnt, I was dehydrated and exhausted and had no time to recover and recuperate after such a big weekend.

So Monday was a huge struggle, and the week just kept getting harder and honestly felt like it wouldn’t let up.

Here’s the weeks overview:

Monday 24/3/13

AM: Woke up 5.45am | Fell back asleep at 7.30am till 8.45am (I think)

I woke up with the intention of going to my gym session, but I didn’t go as my body and legs were still so sore and exhausted from the weekend of work plus my sunburn on my back was pretty bad and painful.

PM: Yoga 6.30pm-7.30pm | In bed by 11pm | Asleep around 11.30-11.45

Didn’t get home from yoga until 10.15pm due to flood waters blocking the roads home. 

Tuesday 25/3/14 

AM: Woke up 7am, fell back asleep | Finally woke up at 8am

Had a good but emotionally draining afternoon, felt very low and depressed throughout the evening. I think this was due to my being hungry/needing energy which I didn’t provide myself with throughout the afternoon.

PM: In bed (finished uni work) at 11.15pm

Wednesday 26/3/14

AM: Woke up 5.45am | Gym session 6.30am-7.30am

Went to see a late night movie with friends tonight.

PM:  Home at 11.30pm, asleep around midnight or just after

Thursday 27/3/14

AM: Woke up 9am | Fell back asleep, woke up at 10am

PM: Work 6pm-9pm

Friday 28/3/14

AM: Woke up 6am | Gym session 6.30am-7.30am

PM: – 

Saturday 29/3/14

AM: Woke up between 8am and 9am

PM: Work 6.30pm – 10.45pm

Sunday 30/3/14

AM: Woke up 8am | Work 9am-12noon

PM: Work 6pm-10pm

Reflections:

I honestly cannot remember the times that I eventually got to sleep for the last few nights of the week, I got extremely unmotivated with this sleep project because my week was just horrible, so I didn’t keep up with recording. But the fact that I can’t remember the events of those nights (only a couple of days later) just goes to show that I wasn’t very  mindful of what I was wasting spending my time doing and I am realising more and more throughout my study of happiness and its causes and conditions, is that this is also a hinderance to my long-term wellbeing and happiness. Being in your head and not in the moment only leads to dwelling on ‘negatives’, over-thinking and in my case, anxiety over things that need to be done or upcoming events.

Overall, there were no significant improvements in my sleep habits and some nights I reverted back to unproductive time wasting on the internet, something which I am working towards stopping. However, I also feel that I didn’t completely revert to my old habits, I still attended two out of my three morning gym sessions and I was asleep around midnight each night, only slightly later than the times recorded in week one.

The fact that I was so ‘unhappy’ this week correlating with a week of not so great sleep actually provides a great deal of insight that I do need to consider, as this is a stark contrast to week one in which my sleep showed improvement and overall I felt a great deal happier. This observation does not show that sleep has a causal affect on happiness, but rather highlights correlation of the two at this stage of the experiment. However, I look forward to week three with hope that I make more sleep improvements and hopefully have a more positive week.

Thanks for reading and I hope you’re enjoying this series if you are following along.

Let me know, how does your sleep effect your happiness?

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