A Week of New Year's Resolutions: High School Student Gets the Recommended Amount of Sleep


New years make people rethink their habits, being seen as a time for improvement through New Year’s resolutions. Anything from working out, to being social, to simply giving up a bad habit like nail biting or stress eating. I kept the resolution of getting eight hours of sleep.

I began on a weekend which made it easy to get proper sleep. This ease disappeared quickly once the week started. Late start was forgiving since I could stay up later but still get eight hours of sleep. After Monday, I would have to go to sleep at 10 pm to wake up at 6 am for zero period.

This self-assigned bed time was difficult to meet. I procrastinate, so I did not have time to finish homework before then. To make up for lost time, rather than being diligent, I found it better to complete unfinished homework at school. This may not be an honorable system, but it allowed me to keep my normal lifestyle while still getting proper rest.

There was also the issue of being a party killer. I turned down plans with family because I would not be able to go to sleep on time. Whether those plans be going out to eat or watching a movie, I had to shut down the joy.

In class, I found the benefits of this strict schedule. In math class I usually doze off and nearly fall asleep, but I was able to stay awake the whole class and be very attentive, making the class not only less boring, but also slightly interesting.

After finishing the week off, I look back at the experience as surprisingly difficult for me, but it made me rethink my usual sleep patterns. If it was that hard for me then it means that I rarely get healthy amounts of sleep. People underestimate how much sleep affects their life.

I realize now that, while it is frustratingly inconvenient to sleep so early, sometimes it is better for the greater good to go through annoying rituals than to always do what is easiest. I may not be able to keep up this resolution perfectly, but seeing how much sleep improves life as a whole, it is worth a shot to try following this lifestyle.

One small choice can have extreme consequences; sleep is one of those choices. The benefits of sleep are much stronger than the temporary joy of staying awake for a few more hours.

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