The Power of Sleep

“It is a common experience that a problem difficult at night is resolved in the morning after the committee of sleep has worked on it.” – John Steinbeck

I know a thing or two about computers and I laugh (a bit, inside… ) when people chafe at the magic of the computer reboot.

They howl (not actual howling) and complain about how it should just work and are frustrated when restarting the computer fixes the problem.

They both want the computer work problem-free and they don’t understand why the reboot solves so much (and are annoyed by computer techs who answer the question “Why did a reboot fix it?” with some version of “I don’t know exactly, but it works now right?”)

The reason why the reboot works is it’s like a good night’s sleep for the computer. Computers, unlike humans, don’t need seven-to-eight hours of sleep to be refreshed and energized, but they do need the equivalent.

A reboot allows the computer to test every aspect of it’s hardware and reload all the files and settings it uses to work. There are millions of lines of code in a modern computer’s operating system and if a couple of them get loaded improperly something isn’t going to work.

The same (sort of… ) can be said for humans. The point, and the greater truth, is that we need rest, and a good rest is often all we need to figure out a tough question (or problem, or issue, or conundrum, or… ).

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And, while this is a topic for a longer blog post, for another day, the truth is everyone needs at least six hours of sleep per night, and most of us (the vast majority of us… ) need between seven and eight hours.

Don’t believe me? Test it: Abstain from caffeine after 3:00 PM, eat a light dinner, take no alcohol for 21 nights and sleep 7.5 hours – your energy, mood and productivity will be transformed (for the good!).

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