A reported 76 percent of American adults have trouble sleeping at least a few night nights every week and chronic insomnia afflicts 15 to 20 percent of the population. Why is it so hard for so many of us to get the shut-eye we need and what can we do about it? In this Reading Course, contributors investigate insomnia and the multitude of social and environmental factors that make sleep so elusive, and then offer some practical clinical strategies in people’s personal and work lives for helping them sleep better. Mary Sykes Wylie explores the insomniac nature of our entire civilization, in which sleep tends to be regarded as a waste of otherwise productive time. Rubin Naiman explores our widespread fear and disregard for darkness—both literal and figurative—as one of the most overlooked factors in the contemporary epidemic of sleep disorders. Margaret Wehrenberg and Laurel Coppersmith describe the unprecedented toll that the relentless stress of the high-tech workplace takes on our capacity to wind down at the end of the day.
Sleepless in America: Making It through the Night In A Wired World by Mary Sykes Wylie
Nightmind: Making Darkness Our Friend Again by Rubin Naiman
Technotrap: When Work Becomes Your Second Home by Margaret Wehrenberg et al.
1. Discuss the link, if any, between insomnia and genius or creativity.
2. List the steps necessary to restore the body’s circadian rhythms.
3. Define “nightmindedness.
4. Describe the toxic impact of the workplace on the well-being of our clients.