I read a crazy statistic that said “In 1850 Americans crawled into bed at a reasonable hour and slept an average of 9.5 hours a night. By 1910, half the country had electricity, but our recent ancestors were still breathing evenly with their eyes closed, on average, nine hours a night. By 1950 an average night’s sleep decreased to 8 hours. And by 2008, Americans, on average, go 6.5 hours of sleep a night.” - Kathy Peel – America’s Family Manager
We are a sleep deprived nation. How do you think that is affecting our marriages, our parenting and our homemaking? I would go out on a limb and say that it is effecting them negatively. It is much more difficult to be patient when we feel tired. It is much more difficult to be consistent in training our children when we feel tired. It is much more difficult to be “joyful in all circumstances” when we are tired.
So what do we do? We must make sleep a priority. We must learn to manage ourselves more wisely!
Ephesians 5:15,16 says “Be very careful, then, how you live – not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.”
Evaluate your hours in the day and consider:
1. Do I often stay up late watching television or reading on the computer? Technology is stealing our sleep.
2. Have I set up routines in my life that save time. Do you waste time trying to figure out what is for dinner or trying to find a lost piece of paper. Do you procrastinate and do all your housework in one day? Read my weekly routine here.
3. Do you view your time as precious? Just as we spend money – we spend time. We have a limited amount of time in the day – just 24 hours. Are you budgeting your time like you budget your money – wisely?
4. We’ve got to disconnect. When evening falls and it is nearing your bedtime – we need to disconnect from facebook, message boards, texting and any other technology that will steal your sleep. If this is hard for you – set a timer (I’ve been using my cell phone alarm) and when it goes off – disconnect!
5. Choose a bedtime goal and strive to be there every night. It is best for your body if you attempt to go to bed around the same time 7 nights a week.
Start the new year out right by letting yourself have an early bedtime tonight. Put the kids to bed and then you go to bed too! If you wake too early enjoy the quiet morning with a cup of coffee and your Bible. Your family will be blessed by receiving the gift of a well rested wife and mommy.