UNITED STATES—I have not been sleeping well lately, particularly in the past week and I have been trying to pinpoint exactly what has been happening to lead to chaos for me. Well, there is one thing that suddenly changed; my work schedule swapped from midday to afternoon hours to overnight. Yes, so I had to readjust my sleep pattern.

For anyone who has ever encountered working midnights they know, it is indeed a struggle, training your body to stay up when it is used to sleep is hard as hell. I think when you sleep during the day many people have trouble with it, but I would argue, when you’re tired you can sleep anytime of the day. When the body is ready to sleep you cannot stop it.

I will admit the one thing I love about working midnights is you don’t have to deal with as many people, which is already a plus to me. However, my sleep cycle is so thrown people. You would think when I get home during the wee hours of the morning I want to immediately go to sleep. Nope. I can’t and trust me I’ve tried. The body is a bit wired, which means I cannot sleep right away. After maybe 2 hours of peddling around, I get a nap, then I’m back up and then I sleep 3-4 hours if possible and then I have to get up and prepare to go to work.

It is not fun America not fun at all, especially when your body is running on empty because it places you in that fight or flight zone, where you push thru even though you know it might not be the healthiest thing in the world. Tact on family stress and that is another issue. It seems like stress no matter how often you attempt to avoid it or navigate around it, you simply cannot win.

I recall talking at psychology course and a sociology course as an undergraduate where the focus was about the impact of stress on the mind, the body and our overall health. You might know this, but stress is not good people. The more you can reduce it the better, but with annoying family members bringing their problems to you or adding to your stress level it can impact your sleep.

You may have just been prepared for bed and a curveball is thrown your way, as a result you are tossing and turning all night unable to turn that brain of yours off as a result of the stressor that has just been introduced into your life. I always say if someone is calling you late at night, it is usually bad news and you have to deal with that adjustment. The best way to combat stress is to deal with it head-on, just allow things that are causing you to have sleepless nights to fester. Don’t try to solve all the problems at once, but do what you can.

Also when it comes to sleep know your sleep pattern. No, I’m not referring to how you sleep I’m talking about when you discover that the body is ready for sleep. We all have a sleep pattern where certain times during the day or when the day is nearing an end that the body starts to hint things to you. For me, when I’m not working overnight midnight to 1 a.m. is the time my body will absolutely fall to sleep. If I push myself beyond that time frame I’ll be up for hours before I can sleep.

So with that said, don’t fight going to sleep when your body is telling you it is time for you to go to sleep people. Sleep is vital for the body’s overall health so if you ignore it, it will only hurt you in the long run. Don’t feel guilty about getting a few extra hours of sleep we all need it sometimes America.

Written By Jason Jones