Hope you're all having a wonderful 2011 so far! This year, my resolution is to go to bed earlier. This may sound like a rather self-indulgent goal but the truth is that I do not sleep enough. And not only do I suffer for it, but my kids do too. When I'm tired, I have less patience, less capacity for work, and compromised parenting skills. And who wants to start a new activity, cook a meal, or take a walk when all you want to do is take a nap?
My perpetual exhaustion is largely a result of nighttime feedings. Thankfully, Emily is down to one feeding a night, which usually takes place between 2 and 4am. But even that relatively minor interruption in sleep, when it is night after night after night, can lead to tough days. Add to that a regular bedtime of midnight or so and needing to get up before 7am, and we have a recipe for zombie.
I am a night owl AND a morning person. I love to stretch the evening out sans children, hanging out with Dan, laughing at the TV, indulging in a novel I cannot put down, organizing a drawer or closet, watching 80's commercials on youtube, catching up on email, etc. I also love the early morning. Being outside in the fresh morning air, feeling the quiet and newness of the day, knowing you have the whole day in front of you, all can be quite invigorating. But burning that candle at both ends has finally caught up with me. I've become a molten blob of wax, and I need to get back into shape!
So I have committed to stop all non-bedtime activity by 10pm, and be IN bed by 10:30. At first I tried to be in bed by 10 but that resolution was broken on night #1. Not realistic at all. So far this year I've succeeded in being in bed by 10:30 (of course it's only been 3 nights) but already I feel a difference.
My other resolutions (less measurable, but of which I'm very mindful) include being a more effective parent, getting more work done in less time, replying to emails and phone calls in a more timely manner, telling people "thank you" rather than just feeling grateful privately, being there for friends and family in need, cooking healthful foods and exercising daily, and making time to do extra things like volunteer in my community. Hopefully sleeping more will prove to be the first step towards these other improvements.