The Beauty of Sleep

Everyone’s heard of this classic description of college: “Good grades, sleep, social life. Pick two.” Unfortunately, I’ve found that this true. And the most disturbing part is that the majority of students, myself included, choose to give up sleep in favor of the other two options. Personally, I take my schoolwork very seriously but also love my friends; I hate the feeling of missing out on a good time, even if I should be getting in bed early to be alert for my 8:30 class. I frequently skimp on sleep just to accomplish everything I want to do. However, this eventually ends up making me feel sluggish and awful. So what’s the solution? I think that there’s a way to find a balance between getting enough rest and still having a happy, productive college life. Here are some tips to achieve this:

Organize Your Schedule

I’ve found that if I plan out my days in advance, I’m much more efficient with my time. Instead of spending my hour break between classes on Facebook, I’ll head to the library or a coffee shop to try to get some work done. This gives me more time later to spend with friends. It really helps me to write down all my activities each day in my planner so I can see what exactly I have to accomplish and when I have time to meet up with friends. It definitely helps me avoid having to pull all-nighters to finish long assignments.

Make Sleep a Priority

Although I want to do it all, I’ve learned that I just can’t. It’s impossible to attend every party or join every club or ace every assignment. It’s important to take a step back and put your health first; sleep is a key aspect of this. Instead of staying up until the wee hours of the morning studying or going out with friends, I’ll just decide to end my night a little early so I can get enough rest. This way, I can still have fun or get work done while making sure my sleep schedule doesn’t suffer.

Multitask When You’re Awake

Who says you can’t get tons of work done and still have fun? I love studying with my friends; it’s makes the entire chore more enjoyable, and we’re actually able to help each other a lot. It doesn’t work for everyone, but combining your social life with parts of your school life is a great way to maximize your time—and get more sleep in the end. Try grabbing a study room in Perkins with some of your closest friends in a class; it could end up being the best night you’ve had in weeks and prevent you from staying up all night.

Take Power Naps

Sometimes, there’s just no way to avoid getting a bad night’s sleep. Whether the reason behind this is too much homework, too much partying or just having too much on your mind, it happens to everyone. On days when I get much less sleep than usual though, I try to take a quick nap in the afternoon to help make myself more alert and ready to take on the rest of the day. Try taking only twenty-minute naps: any more or less tends to leave me sluggish. Doing this has really helped me find a good balance between sleep, schoolwork and my social life.

Try these tips to increase the amount of sleep you get each night. Trust me, it could really make you happier and improve your life in general.