When I was a child one of my favourite books was about The Sandman, he would ride across the night on his trusty steed, sprinkling sand into the eyes of children who wouldn’t go to sleep, (fast forward to 2018 and Health & Safety would have a fit!), but as a child, the story captivated me, and I returned to my cherished book time and time again.

My Dad was a night owl, and this is yet another trait I’ve inherited from him, I’ve never been one for an early night, would always beg and whine to stay up “just 10 minutes more” from an early age!

Now I have a good friend who has a completely different outlook, his rationale for a far earlier bedtime than mine…if you’re home, and it’s dark outside, and you know when you have to get up in the morning, why would anyone choose to stay up beyond the point at which they can reasonably hope to get a solid eight hours of sleep? His logic, if you can go to sleep, and don’t, well that’s just crazy! What could possibly be a better use of time? Has he not heard of Netflix!

Back to my childhood, I would daydream about being an adult, able to stay up as late as I wanted, and have a fridge full of cheese – no wonder I loved late nights with my passion for a very mature cheddar, (it doesn’t give me nightmares, just indigestion!)

I’ve been an adult for way longer than I was a child, I still love cheese, and late nights of course, but I’m old enough to know that just because I like it, it doesn’t make it good for me!

Thinking back to my former role, I spent the first two and a half years of my employment working nights, something I’d never done previously. For 30 long months I struggled to sleep during the daytime, and I felt as though I was living with permanent jet lag, I was irritable, and emotional all the time, surviving not thriving, and a bloody nightmare to live with!

Coming off nights was the best choice I could have made, and I did have serious concerns for both my physical and mental wellbeing at the time.

Back to present day, and my recent Mental Health First Aider Training carried a repeating message throughout the duration of the course…how can you expect to take care of others when you neglect your own self care, we all know it, but sometimes it’s harder to practise what you preach!

But we know now that insufficient sleep, interrupted sleep and irregular patterns of sleeping and waking can increase the risk of heart disease, obesity, diabetes…the list goes on.

The good news is that the human body likes routine, so I’m trying really hard to get into some good ones! Reduced screen time before bed, a warm drink and some quiet meditation with my bedside ‘Alexa’ is working well so far.

And if all else fails…”Oh Mr. Sandman, bring me a dream.”

Sue Alty – The Creative Coordinator

Contact Sue

We think Sue must be a ‘Master of the Dark Arts’, as she has hidden depths! Running our office with meticulous planning and capability, Sue is an avid list writer with a keen eye for detail. But don’t be fooled by that organised demeanour, for Sue is as creative as she is efficient! A skilled communicator with a humorous edge, Sue is as passionate about people and their learning and development as she is about becoming the future Mrs Tom Hardy or Mrs Benedict Cumberbatch (either will do!).  An interesting career path has taken her from the glamour of working in luxury London hotels to the chilled Distribution Centres of supermarket retail, and whether managing small groups or large teams, people are at the heart of everything Sue does.