rest and relaxation
You know a little too well what your kitchen looks like at 3 a.m. You’ve memorized the light patterns on your bedroom ceiling, counted thousands of sheep, and watched your Zen Alarm Clock for countless hours. And you’ve come to expect the thump of the newspaper at the front door a few minutes after 5.
If this sounds familiar, you’re in good company: Sixty-seven percent of American women surveyed in last year’s National Sleep Foundation poll said they regularly have trouble sleeping. Many of the culprits are hallmarks of our current culture: long work hours, stress, sugar-laden cappuccinos, wanting to fit too much into one day. Several recent reports, including a study published in Social Science & Medicine titled “Is Sleep Really for Sissies?,” have suggested that we value what we do during the day much more than what goes on at night.
But good sleep isn’t something we can afford to take off our to-do list. Like a nutritious diet and exercise, sleep is a foundation for health — not to mention sanity.
“It’s a bedrock,” says Paul Glovinsky, Ph.D., coauthor of “The Insomnia Answer.” As anyone with sleep trouble knows, a single bad night can hamper productivity, memory, even basic conversation skills. But it’s over time that insomnia really takes its toll. “We’ve seen that, in all kinds of ways, deficits accrue when you don’t sleep.”
Bamboo Digital Chime Clock, for a progressive awakening
Poor sleep may set you up for heart problems, for instance, plus lowered immunity, depression, diabetes, obesity, and chronic pain. One study actually proved that sleep deprivation can damage our mood in a very real way: Compared with those of rested people, the emotional centers of the brain in sleep-deprived people were 60 percent more reactive to negative experiences.
So what’s a droopy-eyed, overcaffeinated, dream-deficient woman to do? Committing to good sleep hygiene is a start. But it also pays to identify your unique sleep profile. There’s no single insomnia pattern; there are many. And delving into the details of yours can help you overcome it.
We went to several sleep experts with some common sleep types, like the person who can’t stop thinking, the one who wakes up at odd times, and the one who keeps finding excuses to push off bedtime (Really? Another episode of “House Hunters?”).
As it turns out, these patterns often have distinct causes and solutions. Don’t be surprised if more than one profile rings true; your patterns may fluctuate. The key is to give some serious thought to your sleep life. Use The Zen Timepiece with the Bowl /Gong to waken you. Try turing it around so that the digital display doesn’t show. The quality of your waking life — not to mention your health — depends on it.
Boulder, Colorado—an innovative company has taken one of life’s most unpleasant experiences (being startled awake by your alarm clock early Monday morning), and transformed it into something to actually look forward to. “The Zen Alarm Clock,” uses soothing acoustic chimes that awaken users gently and gradually, making waking up a real pleasure.
The luxurious awakening provided by the Zen Alarm Clock is part of the growing preference for things natural—natural foods, natural fibers, and now, natural acoustic sounds. Like organic tomatoes in your salad, the organic sounds of the Zen Alarm Clock’s sweet acoustic chimes are truly a gourmet experience.
What makes this gentle awakening experience so exquisite is the sound of the natural acoustic chime, which has been tuned to produce the same tones as the tuning forks used by musical therapists. According to the product’s inventor, Steve McIntosh, “once you experience this way of being gradually awakened with beautiful acoustic tones, no other alarm clock will ever do.”
Adapted from Body + Soul Magazine, May 2008 by Sarah Schmelling
Zen Alarm Clock for a Gentle Awakening with a Bowl Gong and Mindfulness Timer
Now & Zen’s Alarm Clock Shop
1638 Pearl Street
Boulder, CO 80302