| Does having a purpose in life make you sleep easy?
How well do you sleep at night? Poor sleep is known to increase the risk of developing serious medical conditions, including obesity, heart disease and diabetes, and to shorten life expectancy. Yet the average person in the UK is under-sleeping by about an hour a night, losing the equivalent of an entire night’s sleep a week, according to the Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH).
Now, in the first research of its kind, US scientists have found that having a purpose in life results in improved sleep quality. “Helping people cultivate a purpose in life could be an effective drug-free strategy to improve sleep quality, particularly for a population that is facing more insomnia,” said senior author Jason Ong, an associate professor of neurology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, in Illinois. In the new study 823 people between the ages of 60 and 100 answered a 10-question survey on purpose in life and a 32-question survey on sleep.
Those who felt their lives had meaning were 63 percent less likely to have sleep apnea and 52 percent less likely to have restless leg syndrome. They also had moderately better sleep quality, a global measure of sleep disturbance. Read more about the sleep survey>
A simple text for your worldly possessions?
Did you know that around 40% of people die without making a will? According to the Law Commission one of the reasons for this surprising statistic is the formality it involves. The Commission believes present rules concerning wills are outdated and need to be brought into the “modern world”.
Under a radical overhaul of inheritance laws being proposed by the Law Commission, texts, emails and voicemails could be considered as a valid will by the courts.
This means the family of a car crash victim who did not make a will could apply to have the content they sent in a text message, email or voice recording recognised as a last testament. Proposals also include a call for the legal age to write a will to be lowered from 18 to 16, and a new mental capacity test which takes into account conditions such as dementia.
The Law Commission believes that more people (including the seriously ill and less able) will make wills if they are allowed to use electronic documents and audio/audio-visual recordings. However, it also admits that dissatisfied relatives may be tempted to sift through a huge number of texts, emails and other records in order to find some evidence that could be positioned as a will.