I stayed up pretty late with Jovani the other night. There was a new movie released on a streaming service that I was very excited to watch. We made it into a movie home date and my dinner included a big bowl of popcorn. I probably consumed more calories than normal that day, but the next morning I was surprisingly hungry. My stomach began to growl much earlier than normal. Plus, I had constant thoughts about sweets. My energy was low and my attitude was somewhere between on-edge and “meh”.
What I didn’t mention earlier was that we made it to bed sometime close to midnight and I was up at five in the morning. My experience that day was pretty consistent with what research has discovered about how our bodies respond to lack of sleep.
If you do a web search about how lack of sleep affects the body there are multiple articles. I will even link a good one here in case you would like more information. However, it is very important to be aware whenever you are trying to make a habit change. Lack of sleep will make you feel hungrier, less satisfied, have a shorter fuse, a slower metabolism, and increased levels of the stress hormone cortisol.
So, what should you do? Two things: Get 7-9 hours of sleep. As Ann Lemont said, “Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you.” The second thing is, become aware. If you did get less sleep, pause before reacting to your body’s responses. Filter it through the lens of knowing that your physical body is stressed by lack of sleep instead of simply indulging in those exhaustion-driven urges.
We might be tempted to skip out on some hours of shut-eye, but I love that God’s blueprint for health includes several hours of rest. It makes us have to put down our worries and our striving and trust Him as we care for ourselves. Psalm 3:5, NLT states: I lay down and slept,
yet I woke up in safety,
for the Lord was watching over me.
Sleep well, my friends.
Journal Prompt: How much sleep do you typically get each night? How do you feel when you wake up? If you are consistently missing out on sleep, what is the reason? Is it something you have control over, and if so, how could you support yourself to make a better choice?
by Lora Armendariz
You Can Do It!
Do you want to fall out of love with a destructive habit? The first 42 episodes of this podcast are a resource for anyone who wants encouragement and information as they take a six week break from a habit in order to fall out of love with it.