5 Questions for Arianna Huffington
Cofounder and editor in chief of The Huffington Post, Arianna Huffington wants to put you to bed with her latest book, The Sleep Revolution. She will be the keynote speaker at the Sun Valley Wellness Festival in Sun Valley, Idaho on May 26–29, 2017.
S&H's Editor in Chief Stephen Kiesling and columnist Rabbi Rami will be joining Arianna Huffington and many others at this yea's Sun Valley Wellness Festival! Purchase your tickets here.
1. What are the telltale signs of sleep deprivation?
There are so many—and they go beyond the obvious one of simply being tired. Sleep deprivation also lowers our immune system, so being sick is another sign. We tend to react impulsively and emotionally to challenges, and have trouble remembering, learning, or completing cognitive tasks. But unfortunately, even our judgment about ourselves and how we’re performing can be impaired by sleep deprivation.
2. What personal changes did you make to ensure that you get the rest you need?
One of the biggest changes I made was to banish my phone from my room at night. Our phones are repositories of everything we need to put away to allow us to sleep—our to-do lists, our in-boxes, our anxieties. Now, before I go to bed, I gently escort my phone out of the bedroom.
3. What natural sleep aids do you suggest?
There are many of them. One I like is writing down all the things you have to do the next day, which helps unburden your mind and release you from the day.
4. What restorative benefits happen to our bodies and minds during sleep?
One neuroscientist I wrote about in The Sleep Revolution compared the sleeping brain to a dishwasher, washing away all the toxic waste that builds up during the day.
5. Many people are having sleepless nights due to the changes happening in our country. How do we stay engaged without staying up all night?
Great question. What’s essential to remember is that we can’t stay in a state of turmoil all the time. And that doesn’t mean disengaging. In fact, the best way to engage—meaning to engage productively—is to take care of yourself. That means making time to get out of the storm and into the eye of the hurricane, where it’s quiet. That’s where you can think, rest, consider what you really want to do, and recharge to engage in an effective way.