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a blog by Chris Barrow

"I need more sleep"

I'm wondering why so many of my client's weekly progress reports currently include variations on the phrase "I need more sleep."?

I've been referencing Matthew Walker's excellent "Why we sleep" for 2 years now, explaining how both quality and quantity have an important effect on our performance and behaviour.

If you don't feel right (or those around you are presenting a challenge), it's important to include lack of sleep as a possible cause or contributory factor.

"Are you getting enough sleep?" may not be a question you can ask an employee or work colleague without getting into trouble, unless it is set in a compassionate framework - so be careful but do gently explore.

As for yourself, have a think about what time you get to bed, what time you rise and, perhaps most significantly at present, how much screen time you expose yourself to before lights out and after that alarm jolts you back.

Doom (or any other kind of) scrolling is not an effective way to ensure that you drift quickly off into peaceful slumber, nor is it a great way to greet the day.

Last week on my tour of Northern Ireland, I found myself scrolling in my hotel room and had to make an effort to stop, reminding myself that when I close my home office in the evening, the devices stay down there.

We do indeed need more sleep - and less screen time.

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