Daylight Saving Time (I just now saw online that it’s not “savings”) just began at 2am today. This means that almost all of us in the US and Canada (Arizona, Yukon, Hawaii, most of Saskatchewan, and a few other places excepted) lost one hour of sleep last night. Even though it’s only one hour, it can make us feel grumpy and off-kilter for a while.
There’s loads of advice on dealing with the time change. This article in The Conversation offers us 11 pieces of advice about dealing with the time change. Roughly, they are as follows:
- go back in time to make sure you’re well-rested in the past (thanks…)
- go back in time to adjust your sleep schedule incrementally– like 15 minutes earlier for 4 days (has anyone actually ever done this? I doubt it)
- Use light first thing in the morning to help wake you up (as if you didn’t do this before)
- stay away from screens at night (yeah yeah…)
- adjust curtaining (thickness, opening and closing) to create light conditions at the right time (did we need to hear this again?)
- exercise in the morning (I’m guessing it’s another get-some-light thing, but may be there just on principle)
- have a protein-heavy breakfast if you’re sleep deprived, to avoid eating sugars and carbs (this seems irrelevant to the sleep thing; they’re doing a little food policing while they’ve got your attention. Hmphf.)
- don’t have caffeine after noon (my reaction is either “duh” or “back off from my caffeine habit”)
- avoid alcohol at bedtime (please insert same reaction as above)
- be patient with your kids, as meltdowns, irritability and loss of attention are common reactions to loss of sleep (they should’ve added to be patient with grown-ups too, including self and others)
One thing they didn’t say was this: be really happy about the time change and feel free to celebrate!
You may be thinking: what? That can’t be right. I mean:
Yes, of course– I fully agree. And yet. I’m so psyched that we get our evening light back! Here are some reasons I’m really happy about the time change:
- More light for evening bike rides, walks, swimming, etc.
- More light for my long commute home, meaning that I’ll feel less blurry
- More light later in the day for more activity at home– chores, cooking, crafts– and less burrowing into the couch, binge-watching Top Chef (not that it’s a bad thing, but I’m ready for a change)
- More evening time on my back porch for reading, chatting or eating with friends, etc.
There are two more things I really like about the time change, which I saved for last, as they are my favorites. First, having less light in the morning and more later in the day reflects my own personal rhythm– I get started later in the morning anyway, and prefer to have my daylight shifted more towards evening. And Second, the time change means that spring is coming and that summer is not far behind. I love me some summer, and will be celebrating the arrival of this year’s summer season with great joy.
So, readers, what are your views about the time change? Did my ode to springing forward help? Or just further irritate you? How about trying a protein-heavy breakfast– I heard they help… 🙂