A Paradox for the Ages

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In the past two and a half months of school, I’ve encountered an odd everyday situation dealing with sleep and homework. I either take a nap when I get home before doing my homework, which often makes me unproductive upon waking up, or I do my homework as soon as I get home, which also makes me unproductive as well as sleepy. It’s a complicated problem where both my options contradict each other yet lead to the same result.

I often oversleep when choosing to nap, sometimes up to two hours, and when I wake up I normally feel unproductive and even groggy. Whenever this happens, I find it hard to focus on my homework or study for upcoming tests. I normally go to sleep late as a result of unproductiveness that accompanies restlessness the following day. Napping can help me better concentrate in the moment, but it’s time-consuming and most of the time I wake up unproductive.

Another choice is to do my homework as soon as I get home; however, this hasn’t proven to be effective for me, since most of the time I come home tired and unwilling to do any brain work. I also find it hard to focus on homework, thinking more about sleeping rather than the homework I have to do. I come home from school prepared to do homework, yet I don’t want to do it, choosing instead to procrastinate; when I choose to do homework, I feel tired and ill-prepared to do any work.

In this sleep paradox, my decisions both have the same outcome: lack of sleep. If I nap, I feel rested in the moment, but end up sleeping later in the night and waking up tired in the morning. If I do my homework, I feel unproductive and although I end up sleeping earlier, I find homework and studying harder to do.

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