In her #1 New York Times bestseller Thrive, Huffington Post cofounder and editor in chief Arianna Huffington told the story of the day she collapsed from exhaustion, and how that became her wake-up call. She realized that, contrary to our collective delusion, burnout is not the necessary price we have to pay for success.
As Arianna toured the world to talk about the book, she noted one topic kept coming up again and again: sleep. The importance of sleep as a gateway to a more fulfilling way of living struck such a powerful chord that she realized it needed a much fuller exploration.
In her new book, The Sleep Revolution: Transforming Your Life, One Night at a Time (Harmony Books; Hardcover; $26.00; On Sale April 5, 2016), Arianna illustrates how the combination of the myth that burning out is the necessary price for accomplishment and success, along with the distractions of a 24/7 wired world, has imperiled our sleep as never before, resulting in a global sleep deprivation crisis. She goes on to show the crucial role that sleep plays in our every waking moment—and how we can harness its power to improve every aspect of our lives. The Sleep Revolution is a sweeping, scientifically rigorous, and deeply personal look at sleep, from its history through the centuries to the mystery and meaning of dreams to today’s emerging golden age of sleep science. Every week, new research reveals how vital sleep is to our health, happiness, job performance, and relationships.
If you type the words “Why am I” into Google, the first suggestion, based on popular searches, is “Why am I so tired?” These five words sum up what Arianna calls “the existential cry of the modern age.” Even though we know more about sleep than at any other time in history, and how important it is to our physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being, actually getting enough sleep is harder than ever. In The Sleep Revolution, Arianna examines the mystery of sleep, and how we can tap into it to regain control of our out-of-kilter lives, recharge our bodies and minds, and reconnect with ourselves.
She shows how our cultural dismissal of sleep as time wasted undermines our health and decision making and can sabotage our relationships, careers, and even our sex lives. She approaches sleep from every angle, including its critical role in sports, and its often overlooked role in productivity and creativity. She takes on the sleeping pill industry, and talks about the ways in which our addiction to our devices disrupts our sleep. She also presents scientific recommendations and expert tips on how we can all achieve better, more restorative sleep. By highlighting the many areas where the benefits of sleep are being rediscovered—from professional sports and college campuses to the hotel industry and workplaces around the world—Arianna points the way forward to the amazing innovations, reforms, and even new technologies that are ushering in The Sleep Revolution.
The Huffington Post is also launching the #SleepRevolution College Tour at 50 campuses, including Stanford, Georgetown, UCLA, Ohio State, and the University of Georgia. The goal is to spark a national conversation, based on the latest science, about the importance of sleep and the dangers of sleep deprivation, which is at the heart of so many stress-related mental health issues in college. To help students embrace sleep as a performance enhancer rather than something to be avoided, HuffPost has partnered with major brands, including Sleep Number, Jawbone, JetBlue, Marriott, Spotify, Lands’ End, Sleep Shepherd, and Headspace, to host “sleep fairs” to give students tangible tools and products to make changes in their lives and to learn better sleep habits. Arianna and leading sleep experts will be speaking at campuses around the country, and there will be major social media campaigns, as well as sleep-themed blog posts and videos on The Huffington Post from students and professors.
In addition, The Huffington Post, in partnership with Uber, is spearheading a campaign to generate awareness around the dangers of drowsy driving. Lack of sleep can lead to cognitive impairment that’s as dangerous as driving drunk. Through collaboration with road safety advocates, this movement aims to get drowsy people out of the driver’s seat. In addition to activating policymakers and government officials, the campaign includes a dedicated PSA, sleep kit giveaways, and partnerships with companies committed to providing Uber rides for employees who work before or after a certain hour.