Time to rise and shine; Importance of fully waking minds

Annie Finholm, Reporter

     “Mental fatigue, which has subjective behavioral and physiological manifestations, is a psychobiological state induced by prolonged periods of demanding cognitive activity,” according to the Journal of Clinical Medicine

     Junior Alyssa Alford wakes up at “around 9:30” and allows herself time to wake up by playing on her phone. In addition to this, Inc. recommends listening to “fast-paced music.” Inc. states that “brain waves actually will synchronize somewhat to the pace of what you’re listening to, meaning that more upbeat tracks help move the brain into a more active state.”

     The junior believes that since “routines happen every day, the memory of the action turns on your brain.” Northwestern Medicine adds onto this thought by stating, “People are creatures of habit and routines offer a way to promote health and wellness through organization.”  

     Participating in a routine, according to Northwestern Medicine, will decrease the amount of stress, poor sleep, poor eating habits, poor physical condition, and ineffective use of time experienced by a person. A sequence of events preplanned by a person, says Northwestern Medicine, leads to “better stress levels,” as well as “improved mental health.” 

     To ensure maximum proficiency throughout the day, Alford recommends “tak[ing] a shower.” Healthline adds to this statement by saying cold showers have “been proven to improve blood circulation,” as well as increase the number of endorphins produced, which enables brain function to begin. 

     Alford states that she gives her brain “an hour” to wake up. This has been proven to be a sufficient amount of time. According to sleep and fatigue specialist Clinton Marquardt, it is “not reasonable to expect peak performance [of the mind] moments after waking up. Transitioning from being in deep sleep to awake takes some time, normally between 30 and 45 minutes.” 

     A tired mind, says the junior, makes her “work slowly and get distracted easily.” According to a study in the Journal of Clinical Medicine, mental fatigue “induces increased feeling of tiredness, lack of energy, and decreased motivation.”  

     From a behavioral point of view, says the Journal, a tired mind has been shown to “negatively influence performance and cognitive functioning.” The study has also concluded that mental fatigue may also “alter brain activity,” physiologically speaking. 

     The junior believes it is important to allow the brain time to fully wake up so she can “do things to the best of [her] ability.” The best ways to let the mind awaken, says BBC, is to chew gum because it “increases blood flow to the brain” and “going for a brisk walk.” 

     According to the Sleep Foundation, sleep is “an essential function that allows your body and mind to recharge, leaving you refreshed and alert when you wake up.” They add that “without enough sleep, the brain cannot function properly. This can impair your abilities to concentrate, think clearly, and process memories.”