Well, at least we’re failing to get enough sleep together as a planet


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Photo: Getty Images / Caiaimage / Paul Bradbury

One of the strongest arguments for Aladdin being the hottest Disney prince is that whole “A Whole New World” routine. If someone showed up at my window with a one-way ticket to Greece, Egypt, and China, my crop top would be flying faster than any magic carpet.

In reality, though, a late night trip around the world would probably show more people bug-eyed and in the throes of insomnia. Behold the results of 2019 Philips Global Sleep Survey, answered by more than 11,000 adults from 12 countries. As it turns out, sleeping around the world—here defined as “whether we have good sleep hygiene across the globe” and not your wild semester abroad junior year—shows that we’re all failing a little together.

But since I’m aggressively American, let’s focus on how we’re slaying the competition first. The United States, in case you’re curious, actually wins the bronze medal for being one of the more well-rested countries (U-S-A! U-S-A!). So when it comes to at least feeling like we’ve gotten enough sleep, the only countries that have us beat are India for the gold and Saudi Arabia for the silver. Way to go, global fam.

The world average for optimum sleep, however, shows that most of us are falling short. We all know that we’re all supposed to be shooting for a coveted 8 hours of sleep. To that I respond with a strong LOL, with the loudest Ls and the most outrageous O. Instead, average on weekends hits 7.8 hours, and on weekdays—oof—just 6.8 hours.

And now you’re going to have to get Cindy Lauper and Lionel Richie on the phone, because I’m having a real “We Are the World” moment. It would appear that 80 percent of those surveyed are on a magic quest to get better quality sleep, and only 10 percent of those surveyed would go on the record saying they sleep “extremely well.” That means that about 90 percent of people in MULTIPLE countries believe that they really could be sleeping better. I find it heart-warming that we’re all in the same boat here. No matter the color of our skin, eye bags are universal. No matter the words that we speak, “burnout” and “nomophobia” know no language.

It’s beautiful, really.

In short, we all need to go to a magic mattress ride, ideally next to a mischief-eyed charmer who looks A+ with his shirt off. And yes, I’m still talking sleep, not study abroad.

Whether you’re a night owl or an early bird, here’s what your bedtime says about you. And if you need help dozing off, a sleep expert weighs in on what to do when you just can’t fall asleep.

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