A Bedtime Dilemma

I’d like to get to bed early, but I don’t think I ate enough today to sleep through the night. I used to eat a lot of food before I would sleep. But now if I do that I sometimes get acid reflux, and it can wake me up too.
One solution is to eat, wait, and sleep. But then my bedtime goes much later, and I lose the beginning of the next day. I used to try to wake up early, but I wouldn’t be able to fall asleep on time. No matter what schedule I started a week with, I would soon be falling asleep at five and waking up at one.
I hate the feeling of not having slept enough. Having been awake too long is a nice feeling, and I create some of my best work when it’s late at night. But having woken up without being rested enough is awful – the day will at best be pockets of engagement with long spans of distracted states, and low-energy lulls. So sleeping late seems to be the natural solution.
I like the feeling of having gone to bed early; I enjoy having a long morning, I like feeling well-rested. I want to get as much sunlight as I can. But I am often unable to sleep early. I feel too active, or potentially active, or I have things to do that I have not taken care of, or things on my mind, or I’m not hydrated enough, or haven’t eaten enough. So it never comes to be.
“Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise.”
My problems could all be solved by a few simple principles: eat enough to expend enough energy, expend enough energy to sleep later, eat enough to recover, and eat early enough to wind down afterwards. I have several sets of principles that I always regret violating. Some day I’ll right them now. But now it will be an unsuccessful attempt to sleep.
I thought I was on the way to sleeping early. I wondered what I would do until I fell asleep; soon, it was late, and now, I’m trying to get to sleep on time. I repeat this pattern with all sorts of resources: Begin surprised at my wealth, wonder how I’ll spend it -> hesitate, either spending it well or feeling it dwindle regardless -> end in poverty. It happens most often with time, but also with other things. There’s a moment of freezing, of indecisiveness, at the beginning, when faced with too many options. And there’s an inability to escape that initial feeling until it’s too late.

When I start out with not enough of something, I sometimes find later that I have a surplus.


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