When you attend a major university such as Illinois, you may overlook one very important aspect of success. Sleep. Many college student ignore the concept of sleep to get work done, have fun with friends, play video games, etc., but those people do not realize the compounding effects that can come from sleep deprivation.
Nearing the end of my first semester at the University of Illinois, I have found out why sleep is important and why one bad night can lead to a bad week. One week in particular stands out. That week, I was up until 3 a.m. on a Tuesday finishing Physics homework, hoping to finish it early so I could relax for the remaining days of the week. Unfortunately, I was unable to complete the assignment and needed help, so I did go to bed at 3:30 a.m. Heavy-eyed, I slept the minute my head hit the pillow.
I found myself awake at 10:30 a.m. the next day panicked and on the verge of missing the day’s first class, which is what happened. Rushing, I had to piece together some notes, papers, and homework for the day and bolted for the afternoon lectures. Running to the next two classes left me drained and less than productive in completing the simplest homework for the night. The cycle continued. I found myself asleep at 2 a.m. and up at 10 a.m. again, further digging a deeper hole when it came to making classes and fitting in necessary tasks during the day, such as lunch. Finally, I caught a lucky break.
My lecture during the day was canceled and my other homework assignments left were short and capable of being completed in the spare time. That is exactly what I did. Two hours later, I was caught up and on my way to a complete night of rest, of which I enjoyed every minute. The remainder of the week then went on smoothly and without rush following my reset sleep rhythm. From then on, I realized there is nothing more precious when it comes to a successful week at the University of Illinois than sleep.