As I move into my late twenties, the importance of a well-rested night has become abundantly clear. That is much different than my college days during which five hours were adequate and three-hour naps were normal between classes. With a full-time job and part-time career, as well as an active social life, I need to prioritize sleep in order to maintain my hardworking lifestyle. After further research into the topic, I now know that quality rest is incredibly beneficial:

1. Puts you in a good mood.

A good night’s sleep is a crucial factor in staying well-rested and feeling great. We all know that Monday mornings can be tough, but if you have the luxury of getting enough rest beforehand, it just makes the day so much more manageable! Missing out on sleep can leave you feeling grumpy and overwhelmed, even if your situation isn’t as bad as it seems. Research conducted by the Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School proved that these symptoms can further develop into serious health issues, including insomnia, anxiety, and depression. As a millennial woman, life is already stressful enough; why make it worse by not getting a minimum of seven hours of sleep per night? Because if I don’t, then everyone had better stay away as I am likely to be in an unbearable mood. Worse still, this poor sleeping behavior can lead to disease and other bad habits that are best avoided!

2. Poor sleep habits take years off your life

“I’ll sleep when I am dead.” How often have you uttered this statement after deciding to stay out late on a night when your morning responsibilities loom? We’ve all experienced the fatigue that comes with a lack of sleep. But did you know that sleeping more can actually have life-extending benefits? A study conducted by the American Psychological Association found this to be true! So catch those extra Z’s, because they might just help add years to your life. That statement seems like a paradox and refutes itself. Fortunately, by getting the recommended amount of sleep every night, we can ensure a life that is both long-lasting and full of delight.

3. Improves your memory

As medical science continues to progress, research has revealed that a majority of people experience memory issues as they age. My family has seen firsthand the devastating effects of dementia and Alzheimer’s, having watched in sorrow as many dear ones have endured these incurable illnesses. Yet despite this heartbreaking reality, there is hope: research shows that by getting enough restful sleep each night, you can improve your memory and potentially reduce your risk of developing similar conditions. Results from a Men’s Fitness study demonstrate that if people are provided the opportunity to sleep after viewing images, they can recall those objects more accurately than their counterparts who were prevented from sleeping. Sleep is an effective method to improve our memories, as it can help us retain more information and recall it better. While this won’t cure memory issues, a good night’s rest can be supportive in boosting recollection!

4. Sharpen your attention

Our brains are remarkable mechanisms that need a break from time to time. Allowing your brain some reprieve while you sleep will not only facilitate relaxation but also increases focus when awake. Research conducted by Harvard Medical School uncovered that your focus and attentiveness take a hit when you don’t get enough rest, which results in slower reaction times. When you are sleep deprived, it can be difficult for your brain to make decisions efficiently. Get a good night’s rest and wake up feeling refreshed so that your body and mind will be prepared to tackle the day!

5. Keeps you beautiful

A good night’s sleep is essential for beauty. Research conducted by WebMd proves that there really is something like “beauty” sleep! When you don’t get enough rest, your skin will show it: blood vessels in the face expand and dark circles form beneath the eyes. Get a full night of slumber to make sure you look as beautiful on the outside as you feel on the inside. Just as your brain requires rest, so does your skin. It’s no surprise that Princess Aurora was beautiful after sleeping for an entire century! When she awoke, a dashing prince awaited her.

For the best health and productivity, aim for seven to eight hours of quality rest each night. If you are a highly motivated individual like me, sufficient sleep is pivotal to achieving success in your daily endeavors. Make it a point to establish a regular bedtime routine and remember: Doctor’s orders; hit the hay early tonight!

Photo: Thinkstock

Join Forces of Women Professionals

Stay empowered, inspired, and connected with a network of incredible women. Subscribe to our email updates today and be part of a vibrant community driving change together. Don’t miss out on exclusive content, events, and opportunities. Together, we’re more vital! Subscribe now!