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Sleep deprived on Black Friday
November 24th, 2011
11:58 AM ET

Sleep deprived on Black Friday

Stores used to open at 6 a.m. on the Friday morning after Thanksgiving. Sure, you spent all night in a tent outside, but at least you caught SOME shut eye. Now the big chains like Target, Kohl's and Best Buy are opening at midnight. That’s six extra hours of sales time. What’s a dedicated shopper to do but stay up all night?

An estimated 152 million people are expected to shop over Black Friday weekend, according to the National Retail Federation. That’s 152 million people who could be  feeling just a little bit exhausted, not to mention the thousands of employees who are working this weekend, including those on overnight shifts.

Anytime you mess with your body’s natural circadian rhythm there are going to be consequences. First to go is your mood, says CNN sleep expert Lisa Shives. You’ll be irritable and impatient, making the mall a perfect storm of stress. Next to go is your metabolism – so stay away from the food court.


“Many of the hormones that regulate how we metabolize nutrients, they have a 24-hour rhythm,” Shives says, “So they’re not working optimally if you’re eating in the middle of the night.”

Third to decline is your cognitive function. Driving is never a good idea while sleep deprived, so try to have someone who’s had a good night’s rest pick you up from the mall.

Your decision-making ability and your impulse control will also decline, Shives says, which plays nicely into retailers’ hands. You’re more likely to make large purchases unnecessarily when your brain is half asleep.

Finally, getting back on track is going to be a bit of struggle for shop-til-you-droppers.

“You’ll likely come home after shopping and sleep most of the day. Then they’re going to have trouble sleeping that night. If they have to get up and go to work [Monday], they’ll have one very bad day.”

Here are some tips to help you recuperate from your shopping expedition faster:

Avoid taking your children. Children have a harder time re-adjusting to a sleep schedule, Shives says. Leaving them at home will keep them on track.

Take a 20 minute nap. When you get home on Friday, don’t fall asleep for hours. Studies show that a 20 minute nap will leave you feeling more refreshed than a longer siesta.

Go to bed at a normal hour. After your nap, stay up as long a possible on Friday, Shives suggests. If you fall asleep too early you might wake up at 2 or 3 a.m., raring to head back to the mall.

Wake up at a normal hour. We know it’s the holidays, but don’t sleep in too late on Saturday or Sunday morning. Otherwise you’ll have quite the shock come Monday.

Happy Black Friday shopping!


soundoff (48 Responses)
  1. Portland tony

    Silly article. Stay home, shop on line. For all the gas used and related expenses plus the lack of sleep, you are better off shopping the e-stores.

    November 24, 2011 at 12:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. P

    Welcome to the 2011 Holiday season! woot

    November 24, 2011 at 14:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. zencowboy

    Has it come to this? we need advice on training since we are "endurance shoppers"...there truly is no hope.....

    November 24, 2011 at 14:39 | Report abuse | Reply
    • lawl

      It's a pathetic world.

      November 25, 2011 at 23:37 | Report abuse |
  4. P

    quite frankly, I don't think the deals on black friday are that great. Hell look at electronics. If you just wait 2 months the price will be that low anyway.

    November 24, 2011 at 14:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Tedd Roberts

    Lets not forget that not only the shoppers will be sleep deprived, but more importantly, the employees will be sleep deprived!

    Another post on the same topic: http://pjmedia.com/lifestyle/2011/11/24/a-neuroscientists-plea-to-us-retailers/

    November 24, 2011 at 14:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. AshCash

    Zombies is what I call them. Ha

    November 24, 2011 at 17:54 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Kristy

      Well, the ratings are mcpolete for the month of October. As I posted earlier, The Ed Show was behind Wolf Blitzer (in the demo) by 72000 viewers through the 22nd of October. (This included Wolf's win by 249,000 on "Balloon day") In the last 6 days of the month., The Ed Show overtook Wolf Blitzer, and won the month by 50,000 viewers.Thats right, The Ed Show won the October ratings battle with Wolf Blitzer.

      March 4, 2012 at 08:12 | Report abuse |
  7. nissa

    I stay home sleep and watch the ppl fight on tv

    November 25, 2011 at 21:31 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Stevep1

    People are stupid. Where there are stupid people, there is money to be made. Americans are beyond stupid. Also, next time you watch a mad dash for electronics, count the number of Asians in the front of the line. Funny.

    November 26, 2011 at 21:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. tamara reina

    Hey we want longer hours to shop. Shop, Shop, Shop

    November 27, 2011 at 02:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Jenny

    I can wait for hours for a concert to start, but waiting in line with a bunch of other greedy people for some stupid deal? Never.

    November 27, 2011 at 19:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Melissa Wilson

    You are posting an important Mattress & Sleep's item. It's great for winter season.
    Thanks
    Melissa Wilson
    "Sleep Store USA"

    December 24, 2011 at 08:29 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Ezgi

      Also well done to Rimu's handling of it. Unfortunately I was in a ulanerlbve spot with a client last week and this outage provided the ammo one of their employees needed to push them into the arms of another vendor, and I've lost some good passive income as a result. Nothing to be done about it now, but I am interested in Rimu's mitigating actions for the future. Regarding A/B power, one of my VPSes lost power and the other didn't. I'd like to see a way to ensure that my VPSes are all on servers with A/B hookups. Any chance we could see that status in the move tool?

      April 8, 2012 at 05:52 | Report abuse |
  12. Layla

    Republicans are so afraid of Ed Schultz, they wish he would go away. He calls it right down the lmddie, even when it comes to the Democrats. The right wing is not interested in facts or reality so it's useless arguing with them. By the way, people love to watch crap like the balloon incident. That's how we are as Americans, we enjoy drama on TV. The balloon incident was drama. And to tell the truth I don't see a lot of people tuning into MSNBC to watch "balloon family" CNN will win that audience every time.

    March 4, 2012 at 08:37 | Report abuse | Reply
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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.