How to Avoid a Sleepless Friday the 13th
Does breaking a mirror give you the heebie-jeebies? Do you throw salt over your shoulder when you spill it? Do you avoid stepping on cracks for fear of breaking your mother’s back? If so, you’re superstitious. As Stevie Wonder once taught us, “superstition ain’t the way”, but if you haven’t gotten with the program, we realize that this Friday the 13th may be a little nerve-wracking. You may find yourself a little tense, a little more worried, and worst of all, it may interfere with your sleep.
The good news is that you’re not alone – according to pollster Gallup, 25% of all Americans believe in a superstition of one kind or another. When you really look at them though, you’ll see that most superstitions are silly. They’re typically not based on a logic and are often pretty easily debunked. Take this famous example: for years, the Boston Red Sox believed that they were cursed for having sold legendary player Babe Ruth’s contract to the New York Yankees. Their fans believed that this led to their 80+ year drought of World Series championships. Then, the Red Sox won the championship in 2004. So how did the so-called “Curse of the Bambino” end? Was it a voodoo witch doctor? Did they somehow get “the Babe’s” contract back? Of course not. It was all just a superstition, nothing more.
History has provided us with many superstitions from many different cultures, so this week we’d like to share some superstitions about sleep. We realize we can’t go there without addressing the elephant in the room though, namely…
Friday the 13th (And Why It’s Not So Scary After All!)
Loki, the Norse God of Mischief, crashed a party of a dozen other Norse gods: From 700-1100 AD “the Vikings” of Scandanavia traveled Europe by boat. Besides being among the first to do this, we know the Vikings for having a rich mythology. It was so rich, in fact, that you may recognize their god of mischief, “Loki,” from Marvel Comics and movies. One myth tells of how twelve of their “Norse gods” had a dinner party and decided not to invite Loki. Loki showed up anyway as an uninvited 13th guest. Since he’s the god of mischief, he caused just that – he tricked a blind god into killing another, and the period of mourning caused by guest 13 is why that number is considered bad news.
But, why Friday?
Friday is traditionally associated with death: Ancient Romans held all of their crucifixions on Fridays, which was the day they supposedly crucified Jesus Christ. This obviously made it a bad day for humanity in general. In fact, because of this, late 19th century Americans traditionally held executions on Fridays too. So that’s one theory on why Friday’s unlucky. Or is it because…
Other minor superstitions relating to the number 13: A number of lesser-known superstitions and beliefs add into the equation too. It takes 13 witches to make a coven, for example. There were supposedly 13 people at the Last Supper. In the 1690s it was also believed that 13 people at a table or in a group was bad luck. And so on.
No matter which reason you choose, it’s pretty clear that many people get antsy on Friday the 13th for less than rational reasons. Since we’re all about getting you the best sleep on a high-quality mattress, we thought we’d also show how unrealistic some superstitions can be. So as promised, here are…
5 (Mostly Silly) Superstitions About Sleep
- Never sleep with your feet facing the door: According to the rules of feng shui, sleeping with your feet facing the door depletes a person’s energy. Feng shui is the Chinese belief that you should arrange your spaces (and life) to create a harmonious balance of energy. While, feng shui itself is more of a pseudo-science than superstition, its idea that spirits might drag you out of your door if your feet face it definitely is.
- Never turn a feather bed on a Sunday: It will supposedly give you bad dreams for a week. Yet another reason to get a better bed. (Feathers? Really?!)
- If you begin making a bedspread or quilt, always finish it! Otherwise, superstition says you won’t get married. (We’re not sure what happens if you’re already married. Funny how these superstitions never seem to have an expert you can ask for clarification.)
- Never get up on the left side of the bed: It supposedly gives you bad luck. Now this one is fun for two reasons. First, it’s fun because it has a ridiculous remedy. If you do wake up on the left side of the bed, you can protect yourself from bad luck by putting your right sock and shoe on first when dressing! Hey, it’s better than doing it the other way around.The other fun thing about this superstition is that one research study says that it’s actually better to sleep on the left side of the bed. Or put another way, not only is this superstition absurd, but actual science completely contradicts it. (We told you these things were silly.)
- Don’t get interrupted while making your bed. According to superstition, if you do, you’ll spend a restless night in it. Hopefully your significant other, your children, and your phone will get the memo too.
Sleep Before Superstition
Long story short, at the end of the day, it’s far more important to get a good night’s sleep than worry about some superstition. Improper sleep can ruin your memory, making it harder for you to learn new things and retain them afterward. It can make you less focused, and more prone to accidents. It can make you moodier too, and less pleasant to be around overall.
Worse, not getting proper sleep can cause physical problems too. Sleep deprivation has been linked to high blood pressure, obesity, and increased diabetes risk. It can weaken your immune system, throw off your balance and sense of equilibrium, and even put you at risk for heart disease.
Rather than investing in rabbit’s feet or searching for four-leaf clovers, you can avoid all of this by just getting better sleep. A high-quality gel-infused mattress can put you to bed no matter what direction you sleep or get up in. You can order an affordable premium mattress like Lull’s online, and let the bed in a box practically set up itself. With a ten-year warranty, you’ll always get your best sleep. While superstitions can be fun at times, you don’t want to go overboard and forget the basics. Get 7-9 hours of sleep on a high-quality mattress, and you’ll feel like the luckiest person of all. Knock on wood.