Tag Archives: Arianna Huffington
Contrary to what you might think, good sleep is more under your control.
Spending too many nights tossing and turning? Well, you’re not alone. The cure for daytime fatigue or inconsistent sleep patterns can often be linked to daily routines, overall lifestyle of an individual and some health predicaments faced by some individuals. Sometimes people struggle to sleep, some fight to stay asleep and others are buried in so much workload that they hardly have time for enough sleep. In order to curb such patterns, it’s important to find those triggers that could cause insufficient sleep and deal with them before they escalate to harmful health conditions.
Sleeping. It’s harder than you might think — at least doing it in a way that leaves us well-rested and functioning at our best. That’s where the difficulty comes in: work schedules, familial responsibilities, or poor dietary choices (or some combination of the above) can leave us getting a less than ideal amount of rest every night. That, in turn, can have adverse effects on our physical and mental health, our judgment, and our behavior. Depending on our occupation, the effects can be catastrophic.
In her new book The Sleep Revolution, Arianna Huffington describes the consequences of too little sleep, and the ways in which we can work to correct that. It’s a condition that she’s familiar with: after collapsing at her desk and breaking her cheekbone, Huffington realized that a lack of sleep was a problem that she needed to address. She did this in part by making that process more of “a sacrosanct ritual,” she said via email, dedicating a specific span of time and specific activities to readying herself when it comes to resting time. “I didn’t arrive at this ritual instantly — there was plenty of trial and error as I learned which steps helped and which ones didn’t,” she said. “But when you consider that, for decades, I had been treating sleep dismissively, the process of changing my sleep habits was a remarkably quick one — once I decided to make it a priority.”
What follows is a look at several books that illustrate the importance of a good night’s sleep-some by providing a better template for it, others by exploring its cultural history. Get a couple of these on your coffee table and cue up an appropriate soundtrack, and you’ll be on your way to a more rested way of life.
Arianna Huffington, The Sleep Revolution
Huffington’s book juxtaposes her own experiences in learning to get a better shut-eye with a blend of science, personal anecdotes, and scenes of how sleep has been perceived over the years. There’s a good overview of contemporary thought on sleeping — from the disastrous effects of too little of it to the problematic side effects that can come as a result of taking medication to aid in one’s slumber. The Sleep Revolution provides a good window into just what’s at stake when sleep is involved, and how more of it can make for a better world. And it covers a vast territory, from meditation to changes to corporate cultures to fitness to the way we schedule work and education.
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Warriors play hard and sleep well
If Andre Iguodala, NBA All-Star, Olympian and guard for the Golden State Warriors, hadn’t gotten his sleep game in check, he might not have won MVP in the NBA Finals.
Iguodala admitted during a Monday night talk at Stanford University with Arianna Huffington, co-founder and editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post, that he often didn’t get to bed until 4 a.m. in college, and really just took “long naps” rather than getting a full-night’s rest.
“There was a direct correlation between sleeping a certain number of hours and performing well on the basketball court,” Iguodala said.
Some of that poor sleep behavior continued when Iguodala landed in the NBA. But when he arrived at the Warriors in 2013, the team’s health director connected him with a sleep therapist. Iguodala made some changes: He removed his TV and phone from his bedroom, started doing breathing exercises and stretches before going to bed, and would read before attempting to go to sleep.
Last week, Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini revealed that one of his company’s many wellness programs is a system that incentivizes employees to sleep more. “If they can prove that they get 20 nights of sleep for seven hours or more in a row, we will give them $25 a night, up to $500 a year,” Bertolini said on CNBC’s Squawk Box, in a segment with fellow shuteye champion Arianna Huffington, who has just released a book called The Sleep Revolution. He said Aetna employees have “all sorts of different ways of proving it,” including wearing Fitbits to track their sleep patterns.