Has someone ever said to you, “I only got, ‘fill in the blank’, hours of sleep last night”! They know it’s unhealthy but boast about it anyway. How do you know the person is aware that this amount is too little for what they require? The word “only”, is typically used. They pride themselves on being deprived of sleep and want to talk about it like it’s an accomplishment. They may not have been able to avoid the lack of sleep, but they try to own the decision by standing behind it and brag about the unhealthy behavior, like they had no choice. Because if they can convince themselves this was the only choice, it’s not irresponsible.
It reminds me of a criminal who gets away with a crime that they know is wrong and dangerous. The criminal didn’t get caught and wants to tell you how they did it like we should be impressed, or worse, teach us how to be better criminals. People need validation for doing something they know is wrong, and if they get someone’s approval for the behavior, they feel justified to deny the truth and the need for change.
I’m not going to go into the reasons why we need sleep or how detrimental sleep deprivation is to our health. You can do your own homework, but it’s important. I hate how people boast about their lack of sleep and wear it like a badge of honor. Other’s will chime in with their own war stories of sleepless nights. It’s talked about like a selfless act. It is NOT selfless, it is SELFISH!
Take a moment, this moment will do just fine. Reflect on all the amazing things your mind and body do for you, day in and day out. It’s not unfair for it to ask what it needs in return. Why would you ever deprive yourself of one of its essential resources. How could you miss the opportunity to be your best self? Do you want the most out of life? If your answer is yes, then sleep is a condition to live that life.
I am very intentional when I respond to someone who is bold enough to boast about their poor sleeping habits. I do not commend them. I don’t humor. I question their motives, behaviors, and choices. Whatever works to get someone to hear what they’re saying to you. Sometimes I just repeat what they’re telling me, but from a place of love. Because only love should be so bold to boast.