Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Nap-Nighter



So I've adopted a whole new sleep schedule... and thus a brand new outlook on life. I can't remember the last time I felt well rested, but this new lifestyle seems to help my academic life as well. We'll see how long it takes for me to fully acclimate.

What am I talking about? I'm talking about the age old classic Nap-nighter philosophy of the overloaded college student. I go to class all day and finish my work shift. Instead of collapsing at dinner for 2 hours, I only take 1 now and spend the other hour either out walking or in the gym. Then I go home and take a "1 hour nap"... although it usually ends up being a little more than that. Then I head over to the library to get any clarification on what we're covering in trigs, (right now it's arc functions -yeesh) and stop by the cafe before it closes and i'm still trying to wake up and grab a cup of decaf coffee. Then I head back to my suite and get a little work done. It is a great way to recharge my batteries so that I can get a better quality of work done that seems to escape me when I am exhausted. [That is, so long as I have a full load and can avoid getting sidetracked on Facebook]. The nights when I have less to do, I just do a little bit of reading and researching on topics of interest that will either teach me some important "soft skill" that will make my life THAT MUCH EASIER or do a bit of prep for an upcoming project. The system actually works rather well.

Anyway, I knew it was time for some major adjustments to be made when my body just decided to shut down from the excessive autostatic overload [I learned that term in wellness]. AO is essentially when you have been caught in a state of distress that is either so intense or for such a long time that you body finally gives in and lowers its defense systems and you get sick. I'm there, the rapid weather changes finally did me in. The funny thing is, my body just sort of threw in the towel, but my mind kept making me go. Plus I'm working through some broken heart stuff and so I sort've have to keep busy. Getting a little bit of sleep is one thing, but staying cooped up in a room all day can make me feel so confined. That's why I don't do any meditations in there.

In wellness we talked about fight and flight response and how distress can trigger our "autonomic response". I must admit that over the years I have become quite the adrenaline junkie, and even once I've achieved a state of homeostasis and completion, I will cut you if you try to disrupt that, [well maybe not cut you because I'm a pacifist] but I'll definitely find some way to fight back. In all fairness, I will probe first and try to ascertain "the insurgents intention and give the person fair warning that a problem exists in an overly cautious and pragmatic manner." Unfortunately, there are people in this world who just don't care. Their attitude is to get over or establish dominance before someone else takes it and that's a shame. It never fails, as open minded as I try to be, there is always an inevitable clash and I get to spend weeks on personal development that could be better spent in joy and appreciation for life. ah, cest le vie.

But no one likes to be constantly caught in a state of alarm and resistance toward it. If you do it for so long, your mind becomes used to it, and that can be equally as distressing to understand that you are consciously creating more problems in your own mind. Here are a bunch of incredible links that i ran across last night during my study session. I found that because I am constantly in a state of collecting information when I wake up, getting some work in that requires retention works excellently for the "2nd shift". [Ironically, one of my wellness goals is to recondition myself to work my way out of this stress addiction and also better monitor my study habits, so in retrospect it was an excellent way to procrastinate.]
I hope that this practice will serve me much better than my past methods and allow me to be able to get more work done as well as catch up on some much needed rest.

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