My Inner Critic is a Wise Latina

soniasotomayorbookI had a really bad night’s sleep last night, even for me. At one point, I actually dreamt that I was being judged by Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor!

Could be worse–could have been Scalia or Alito or Thomas.

So the yield of twelve+ years work helping others overcome their perfectionism is that my Inner Critic is “a wise Latina woman.”

Could be WAY worse. (And she wasn’t even that bad in the dream!)

Actually, I know why I dreamed of Sotomayor: a friend recently recommended her biography to me with extreme enthusiasm. So I will have to check it out, and I recommend you do, too.

Meanwhile, this week New York Times health reporter Jane Brody ran a column on insomnia, and most of the comments are from desperate insomniacs seeking solutions. The “most liked” comment makes these excellent points:

Going to bed early feels like childhood punishment, and deprivation of all the fun things like TV shows, films, late restaurant eating, snacks, Facebooking and so on — yet if you must rise at 5:30AM or so (as many of us must!), then you need to be IN BED ASLEEP by 9:30PM the previous night…..asleep, meaning you need to start tucking in maybe 30 minutes earlier.

If you get home at 6:30PM, that means you have less than 3 hours personal time each day — to cook dinner from SCRATCH (as NYT pundits tell us we MUST), clean up, care for children and pets, socialize with spouse, personal care, bills and so on.

Right now, insomnia is my biggest health problem (which means, of course, I’m hugely lucky, although it’s still a drag). I’ve basically given up on the traditional full night’s sleep and adopted a split shift: four or five hours of sleep at night and two in the afternoon. But even though a NASA study concluded that there is no performance degradation from that schedule, I don’t feel as fully rested as on those so-rare-as-to-be-almost-mythical instances where I get eight solid hours. (And, yes, I know I’m also lucky to be able to take naps–although most of that “luck” is having organized my life around the central principle of having maximum control over my time.)

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