Father’s Day and Night: A Man’s Sleep

Published in The Huffington Post

man in sportscarI just bought a new sporty car. Well, it’s not really a sports car; it’s a hybrid. My first.

I’ve owned real sports cars in the past and thoroughly enjoyed their agility and power. OK, it won’t break any records, but I was delighted to learn that my new vehicle could sprint from 0 to 60 in under 10 seconds when in “sports” mode.

Sam Keen’s definitive book on male psychology, Fire in the Belly, explores some of the childhood roots of a man’s proclivity to race and speed. Compared to girls, growing boys are more frequently measured in terms of height, cleverness, dexterity, and of course, swiftness. On the playground and in the streets, running fast is a common metric of a boy’s self-esteem and social status. And, of course, this extends into the workplace when he grows up. And back into the streets. Speeding is the most common infraction of the law.

Over the years I’ve had the opportunity to provide sleep consults to a wide range of successful, hard driving men, including professional athletes, business leaders, entertainers and politicians. I found their inclination to speed informed not only their waking and working lives, but also their night and home lives. Curiously, when it came time to hit the brakes and get to bed, they would even do that in hurry — just crashing rather than consciously surrendering to sleep. Many of these men engaged in what I think of as speed sleeping — trying to squeeze sleep into a hurried waking life.
Read the full article on Huffington Post.