Tuesday, 13 May 2008

Feeling Grouchy...

I'm feeling out-of-sorts. And grouchy with it.

I've always classified myself as a "night-owl" type. Left to my own devices, my body clock seems to set itself quite happily to the hours of darkness.

At least, this is what I tell myself. Psychology, see! Larks and night-owls and body clocks...

Unfortunately, my spiritual director has also studied Psychology... and has pointed out one or two home truths. Humans being able to train and adjust their body clocks being one of them. And the necessity of allowing enough time for sleep so as not to induce a state of sleep deprivation being another.

"Oh, but I can never get to sleep before midnight!" I countered, the last time we discussed this aspect of my life. "...Even if I'm in bed earlier, I just lie there..."

A few days later, my SD observed me ordering another after-dinner coffee. "You might want to consider your caffeine intake," he suggested, ever so gently.

My gut response (as always) was one of definitive denial. Two cups of coffee in the evening was nothing to be concerned about... I always drank coffee... that's hardly anything...

...and then he pointed out that I had also consumed two pints of Coca Cola, my usual beverage when I'm driving. And that made my caffeine intake rather high for an evening.

As is the usual way for me, I initially refused to acknowledge that there could be any foundation in fact for this idea. After all, I run on coffee all day at school. I even have my own coffee machine. And I don't have trouble sleeping... I just don't feel sleepy until midnight... and at weekends I don't normally drink coffee, unless I go out for a meal... though I do drink plenty of coke... and tea...

The more I thought about it, the more I began to acknowledge that there might be something in it. So I decided to put it to the test. My caffeine intake at school has been seriously reduced (I don't think I could ever survive without any coffee) and I have resolved not to drink any caffeinated drinks until I've sorted out my sleeping pattern.

The result? I have been tired and lacking in energy for the past two days. By the end of Monday I had a splitting headache, and went to bed at 9:30pm. I then couldn't sleep until 10:45pm, woke up at about 11:30pm, then 2am, 3:30am, 4:30am, 5am and finally 7am (which is cutting things a bit fine for school.) I've also been grouchy and irritable.

I shall give it until Half Term. Until then, don't mess with me. Or my blog.

7 comments:

gemoftheocean said...

Mac, switch to beer!

Mark said...

It's the caffeine.

I did the opposite a few weeks ago, by mistake. I was at a conference all week, and ended up having about 7 coffees a day, and 2 pints of Stella at night. By the time I got home on Friday my body was shot.

Take care,
Mark

bernadette said...

MAC, if you can keep it up, you'll adjust in two weeks. Caffeine is a drug (most of us depend on it in varying degrees) and you will notice how IT was in charge of you rather than the other way round, if you can limit it. BY becoming free-er of it, you`ll notice a knock-on effect in other areas, too. I am very susceptible to addictions myself! I have found that if you cede control to the wrong things,however innocent, such as coffee,it has a direct effect on things spiritual. It feels slightly barmy saying this.. but it is true. Good luck and prayers for you.

Jay3GSM said...

Of course you probably realise, the headaches are due to reduced caffeine intake. Battle through it and you will feel better. It's a matter of will.

Exspectantes said...

I decided to give up caffeine 2 years ago. Took a few weeks to get through those headaches and initial crankyness. Definitely worth it, though! I would suggest making sure you are drinking plenty of water. Staying hydrated helps keep you going when you're feeling sluggish. Many prayers!

Kasia said...

I've heard that eating apples gives you a shot of energy - you might try some apple slices for breakfast while you're adjusting?

rosamundi said...

Caffeine withdrawal is a nasty thing to go through. Headaches, mood swings, the lot.

Take some painkillers (caffeine free ones, naturally), and make sure you're keeping up your fluid intake by other, non-alcoholic means, as dehydration also causes headaches.

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