JournalismPakistan.com April 5, 2020
As we move into the second week of the stay-home directive, many of us must be discovering a new inner self, and how much we take for granted and miss it sorely when it is gone.
Yes indeed, while one pines for the weekend and the late wake-up and the relaxed holiday how tough it is to go through the day when it is mandated you stay home. Never have so many missed going to the office so much. Even the company tea and coffee taste fantastic when you cannot get it.
But in times of trial and tribulation, there is one valid advisory. Sleep is vital, and you should not let it be crinkled or fragmented by tension and stress. A healthy sleep, as opposed to one steeped in depression and exhaustion from which you wake up unrefreshed, is integral to your wellbeing.
No one said it better than Shakespeare. "Sleep that knits up the raveled sleave of care, The death of each day's life, sore labor's bath, Balm of hurt minds, great nature's second course, Chief nourisher in life's feast."
This guy got it down solid. It is all these things, and in this fight today, a weapon and a friend. If we discard it or devalue it or allow it to be hijacked by fear and doubt and worry, it not only wrecks your immune system, it makes us less capable of taking on the crisis.
There is a sanctuary in sleep. If you cannot do your eight-hour stretch, take time off for naps. Those 40 winks will fortify you—even 39. In the armed forces, they teach you to grab every opportunity to flake out.
I am a bit off my diet, like do not feel hungry. Making conversation with others on the phone about the virus is exhausting because it is now repetitive. In two minutes, I lapse into silence. I watch a movie with a numb mind, not fully retaining the plot. The attention span has dramatically reduced. That claustrophobia, that sense of confinement, the impatience, and the helplessness do puncture the mood, but in those times (and they are often enough), I fall back on sleep. Take it from me. It is your best friend and ally in this fight, so don't devalue its importance.
If you find you have insomnia and the goblins are running freely in your mind, then walk around the house, have some cold water, think happy thoughts, calm down and give sleep a chance.
(The writer is a Senior Editorial Advisor of Khaleej Times and the paper’s former Editor. He has also been the Editor of Gulf News, Gulf Today, Emirates Today and Bahrain Tribune)
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