At the beginning of this year I started a new job. It's my first regular Monday to Friday, 9-5 type of job. For all my adult life, I have worked an atypical schedule - first in retail where I worked evening shifts and weekends and then part time with a 10 minute commute. Now, I have a much longer commute (around an hour each way on a good day) and I work the same hours Monday to Friday each week. Predictable and simple.
The one thing that surprised me about my new schedule is how exhausted I am. I have always been someone who needs a lot of sleep to survive but getting those nine (yes, I know) hours a night has become even more important since changing my work schedule. Waking up at 5am everyday definitely takes its toll on you, even if you are a morning person like me.
To make sure that my sleep really counts, I have set a few guidelines for myself. I make sure I eat early, I don't look at my phone after a certain time and I go to bed at the same time every night. I give myself some leeway on weekends but other than that, I stick to my schedule. While this routine certainly helps me keep my sleep in check, there are definite drawbacks. Going to sleep several hours earlier than most people I know means that I miss out on a lot of social interaction. Whether it's watching TV with my partner or texting with my friends, if it doesn't happen before 8:30pm, I'm out.
Most nights I'm able to fall asleep almost straight away but sometimes I lie awake in bed thinking about all the fun things other people are doing while I am trapped in the confines of my own making. So to make bed time more enjoyable for myself, I decided to upgrade my bed linen. I splurged on the most expensive, soft, and fluffy doona I could find. While it cost more than every other doona I have ever owned combined, I am ecstatic with my purchase. It actually makes me look forward to my early bedtime because I know I get to immerse myself into the cloud that is my own bed each night.
I'm also working on keeping my bedside table as neat as possible as I find the clutter can be mentally draining. This can be a challenge for my naturally disorganised and, let's be honest, lazy tendencies. At this very moment there are 3 books, 2 magazines, a random assortment of jewellery, perfume, a roll-on deodorant, and 2 used mugs adorning the surface. Clearly I have a long way to go but I'm optimistic. In fact, I think I will dust those books and put them on the bookshelf where they belong. Well, maybe tomorrow.