When sitting around the dinner table, you might not think sleep has much to do with how well members of your family get along, but it may be a more potent force than you think. Not getting an adequate amount of sleep can disrupt how we relate to one another. Here are four family-friendly reasons to make sure you’re getting the shut-eye you need.
Sleep helps you be more patient
Ideally, we should have the most patience with our family members because we love them. But, when we’re tired, we can also be low on patience. In fact, when you are weary, you are more likely to show patience toward a stranger than to a family member. If you find yourself snapping at others at home, maybe a nap will help clear the air and the tension.
Sleep helps you make better decisions
If you’ve ever tried to make important decisions when you’re tired, you know how hard it is to focus and sort out the options. A tired mind also puts you at greater risk of making poor decisions. Parents are faced with many important decisions on a daily basis, which, if made by a sleep-deprived brain, can result in regrets later on. Better to put off major decisions until you’re rested.
Sleep helps your sense of humor
Healthy humor brings a family together. But, fatigue tends to dull the mind and to make us overly sensitive to things we would normally find funny.
Sleep helps you manage conflict more effectively
It’s not a matter of whether there will be conflict in your family, but rather how your family will manage that conflict. The best conflict management is when those involved are able to be rational and respectful, listen carefully, and work toward a solution together. But, sleep deprivation lowers your ability to exercise those interpersonal courtesies and can often erode into yelling, name-calling, and door slamming.
Sleep is only one component of family harmony, but it’s often the most overlooked one. Make sure that every family member understands the importance of sleep, not only for the individual’s own health, but also for the good of the entire family.