It is better to sleep on things beforehand than lie awake about them afterward.
I am inspired by a recent weekend get-away to write about the spiritual and performance benefits of sleep and dreams. I got two good night’s sleep and felt more renewed to come back to work. When was the last time you came to work fully rested? Did you feel a bit more patient, empathic, joyful, open, attentive, focused, compassionate, affirming? Sleep deprivation on the other hand leads to irritability, attention lapses, lack of focus, and poor performance on various mental tasks.
Some people get their best insights in the early waking period. It’s a time to journal, meditate, or access emerging ideas while your head is still clear. Perhaps you’ve gotten a creative approach to a problem or shift of perspective while in the shower or quietly sipping your coffee at breakfast. This time of morning is when you move from a deeper relaxation and slower brain wave to your waking goal-oriented thinking. Take advantage of this time before your monkey-mind kicks into gear.
When you are really rested you also tend to be happier, more energetic and more fun to around. Why not get more sleep?! Add extra fun, zest and joy to your work by getting more sleep. You’ll probably be nicer to others and more pleasant to be around. Think of it as a gift you give to yourself and your co-workers.
Get sleep, be happy. How’s that for a mantra?
Pay attention as well to your dreams and how you can gain insights to challenges at work. You may keep a dream journal to see if there are any recurring themes that can illuminate an area of your life you need to focus more on.
I worked with a friend who was studying with a Shaman. She learned to journey into the alternate reality of the dream state to do healing for others or get clarity on life challenges. For several weeks we would set our intention at night to meet in the dreamtime to exchange information or get clarity on an issue we had going on during the day. I found several new insights emerged when I set an intention before going to sleep. See if your dreams have anything to tell you.
Sleep and dreams can support your spiritual practice and your work performance. See what happens in the next week as you use this time for your renewal, greater clarity or insights. Let us know what comes up for you.
Have courage for the great sorrows of life and patience for the small ones; and when you have laboriously accomplished your daily task, go to sleep in peace. God is awake. Victor Hugo
For more resources, see our Library topic Spirituality in the Workplace.
Linda is an author, speaker, coach, and consultant. Go to her website www.lindajferguson.com to read more about her work, view video clips of her talks, and find out more about her book “Path for Greatness: Spirituality at Work” The paperback version is available on Amazon. NOW NEW!!! the pdf version of Path for Greatness is available for download from her website. Chapters 1-5 of “Staying Grounded in Shifting Sand” are now available on her website as well.