UNITED STATES—What is the one thing most of us want more of, but have difficulty actually getting it? Any guesses, have you all figured it out? It’s not money, its sleep! Sleep is a vital element to the human body, even if many of us would like to believe that is not the case; the body needs rest to be fully rejuvenated.

Sleep patterns for most Americans are all over the place. I mean do you know anyone who actually gets 8 hours of sleep on a consistent basis? Well children probably, adults, not so much. The biggest factor affecting our sleep is work. Some could argue family life as well, but I think work throws a wrench into things for most people.

When you get off work especially after working an 8-12 hour shift the first thing you want to do is hit the sheets, but the body is a bit wired and the mind is running rampant with things that must be completed. I’ll be the first to admit working from home is a big challenge.

It’s hard to just end your shift and be on your way as if nothing else needs to be completed. You always have that lingering feeling in the back of your head, did I do this, did I do that, did I forget something? It’s hard to leave work and just let things go when you work from your home office.

I honestly love the notion of heading to work at an office. Yeah, you have to deal with rush hour traffic, you might have the boss from hell, and you might have co-workers you despise. But guess what? When work is over it’s over for the day. You don’t have to worry about the chaos until the following day, when you work from home it’s hard to shake that feeling.

My sleep patterns have gotten so bad that I’m seeing myself crash more and more during the week. I have even stamped in my brain that Wednesdays and Thursdays are my busiest days of the week. Why? Well there are tons to do and I program my body to work long hours.

It’s like I eagerly anticipate the end of Thursday because I know that I can now get a little bit of rest without panic. That notion that you can make-up sleep that you lost is crazy. You can’t, no matter how hard you try, if you miss a few hours of sleep, you’ve missed it and you have to move along.

As Americans, we have to ensure that we are not depriving ourselves the opportunity to allow our bodies to regenerate each night. I mean are you going to get to the point where you allow yourself to go into catatonic shock because your body is so exhausted that you just literally fall out? Some people probably will, but I have gotten to the point where I refuse to allow those things to happen anymore.

My career is important, but at the same time so is my health. Did you hear that people, your health is critical? If you’re not healthy, there isn’t much you can do anyway. It’s at the top of the hierarchy in my case, everything else falls below it. Perhaps the most important thing I can share with Americans is if you are tired call it a day, don’t fight to stay awake and continue doing things when your body is telling you otherwise.

This will only lead to mistakes, and if you’re working, the performance will be subpar. A well-rested individual is going to deliver their A-game; a sleep deprived person might deliver work below average. Let’s face it no one wants to be grouped in the average category with everyone else.