Good sleep requires good skills 睡眠品質亦是一門功課

Sleep is never an easy homework. Lunar new year has just ended and I recalled of Sharon Cheung’s suggestion to wish comrades and our elders to always enjoy their meals and have a good sleep. That means ditching the oft-mentioned Gong Hei Fatt Choy. This is such a practical idea.

I am not a good sleeper. During my university days, I used to sleep at 5 or 6am during summer vacation in Taipei. If I did not need to work, I would take Taipei Metro to go around places to make sure that I was tired enough to have a good sleep that night.

After I became a full-time freelance translator, I find it hard to sleep well when I always need to reply emails sent by foreign clients.

Other than Dr David Tsang’s suggestion to count five to ten sheep, I have some methods to get myself fall asleep. Sleep becomes difficult, if I have an idea before sleeping and do not write it down. If I wish to sleep well, I make sure that I write properly in the form of blog article, or put pen to paper to practise writing. A good sleep is possible after I let my ideas flow through writing.

Reading while listening to music is another method. I might feel energetic at the beginning, but I will eventually feel tried after reading for a long time. If I am reading an interesting book and delaying my sleep, experience taught me that I would continue reading until I feel tired before hitting the sack. Reading is good for improving sleeping quality and it makes me feel easier to wake up earlier the next day.

Walking, jogging and swimming are good for improving sleep quality. But we must not discount the possibility of feeling more energetic for a longer time after physical exercise. Waking up at a regular hour is a also good way, because human body functions in a pattern whereby we feel tired as our waking hours are getting longer.

I am writing this piece when Ukraine crisis seems to be getting worse when Russia is reportedly invading more places. I hope it doesn’t turn out to be a full-fledged war. And I wonder if this is a wish too much to ask for.