IT’S 6.30AM and you’re jolted from your slumber by the squawk of an alarm clock.
You peel yourself out of bed, have a shower and a caffeine fix and head off to work.
But you feel neither rested nor relaxed, fatigue itching away at you like a rash.
Welcome to the world of the average Tamworth adult.
New research has revealed the majority of us start the day feeling as flat as a pancake and finish it only slightly more inflated.
The reason: not enough shut eye.
According to the survey, just one in 10 Aussies always feel rested and relaxed in the morning.
There’s a bleak irony in the fact we live in an age where we can access Facebook on our phones and buy 38 different flavours of Tic Tacs, but we can’t master something as fundamental as sleep.
This national sleep debt doesn’t just gnaw away at our quality of life, but it has profound implications for productivity, safety and health.
A sleep-deprived motorist is two to three times more likely to be involved in a car accident, while a sleep-poor employee’s productivity plummets.
Research shows that 24 hours without sleep, or a week of sleeping just four to five hours a night, has a similar effect to a blood alcohol level of 0.1 per cent.
The major cause of the sleep crisis is, not surprisingly, stress.
In our mad clamber to be the perfect employee, parent and partner, we rob ourselves of time and the thing that provides the energy to function – sleep.
We’ve become a nation of sleep-deprived zombies and we’re lesser people for it.
As you head back to work for another frantic year, readjust your new year’s resolutions to include making time to recharge your batteries.
Your body – and your loved ones – will thank you for it.