During my recent road trip my finely-tuned pattern of sleep was annihilated. It’s one thing to have simplicity forced upon you; That has some benefits. But once my sleep was off the rails, everything fell apart. It wasn’t quite Escape-from-New-York-level chaos. It was close though. On one day, I wasted an hour, driving all the way to an entirely wrong address because, the night before I didn’t feel I had 2 minutes to spare to doublecheck.
I’m often viciously critical of myself if I’m still up even a few minutes beyond my desired go-to-bed time, or if I’m still in bed after my get-up time. None the less, for the 10 days of my trip, my sleep times were all over the map. On the one hand, I didn’t die and things got done. On the other hand, it was reminiscent of the old days before I got my sleep sorted out.
Sleep, (when, quantity, and quality,) and daily planning, (what am I doing, when and where,) are related. Back in the day, I cut the Gordian knot by setting a consistent sleep schedule. In a return to Primary School days, I gave myself clear and unchanging go-to-bed and get-up times. Then, arranged around those times I can schedule a specific “plan the day” session. (I’ve tried both “plan for tomorrow” just before bed, and “plan for today” fairly soon after getting up.) With improved sleep and some basic daily planning—which can be literally to simply sit on the beach all day—my life took a serious turn for the better.
But after my recent experience I’ve given this another prolonged bout of thinking and I’ve had a new [to me only, I’m sure] idea: Sleep and planning are not just related, they are circularly dependent on each other.
Here’s a sample pass around the circle: Today’s been busy, and I’ve some things I’d like to finish before sleeping. What time should I go to sleep? What time do I stand up and excuse myself from the current goings on? I need to know how much sleep I’d get if did that at different times. So what time do I have to get up tomorrow? I don’t know. What am I doing tomorrow? I need to spend some time planning for tomorrow, but that’s best done as part of my “alone time” as I’m winding down to sleep… And I cannot simply leave it to luck tomorrow morning. If I have to drive an hour, be some where at a certain time, a shower would be smart too…