Sleep and Organizational Behavior

The topics that pertain most to my life are behavior genetics and predicting, sleep deprivation/ sleep disorders, tolerance and addiction, stability vs. change, and stress/ basic concepts. These topics bring me interest because I have opinions on them. I want to share what I think and how they affect others and/or myself. I can think of myself in all of these topics because of how I can relate to them.

The first topic I want to acknowledge is behavior genetics and predicting individual differences. Behavior genetics are the traits and behaviors you can get genetically passed down from your family members. People can try to predict how someone’s personality will turn out by looking at their parents and/or past generations.

This method of thinking doesn’t always turn out to be accurate. “A study of 500 boys with the genotype of MAOA low combined with the exposure to childhood maltreatment was shown to see if it increased the levels of antisocial behavior” (Stone, 2003).

The results showed that to some extent genetics can effect if a child grows up with certain behavior traits (Stone, 2003). These studies show that genetics do have an affect if a person acts a certain way. With more research we might be able to figure out who important people will be in the future.

A big question with determining people’s genetics to there personality is if it is even plausible to go by their genetics. There are cases in which genetics can be wrong. If we go by genetics then someone can be wrongly accused for actions that they did not commit or might be seen as someone they are not.

“Social influences were partially dependent on 5httlpr genotype such that possession of more 5httlpr’s alleles were associated with stronger susceptibility to the influences of school-level smoking and drinking patterns” (Daw et al, 2013). This information shows that most substance use is mainly a person’s choice and their behaviors come from the environment they’re in and not by the genetics they have.

I can relate this back to my life because my family has a long history of mental disorders that have been passed down. I have always wondered if I got my disorders from my genetics or if they’re something that my environment has caused. When predicting who someone will become, often times you look to who there parents are. Past genetics can show you what disorders and mental illness a child might have but a child’s actions are not caused by genetics.

The next topic that interests me is sleep deprivation/ sleep disorders. Sleep deprivation is not being able to get a good amount of sleep and in it can possibly lead to disorders. “A sleep foundation study showed that 40% or fewer adults get less than 7 hours of sleep a night” (Choo et al, 2005).

Different things like phones, television, and light can keep a person awake even after everything has been turned off. If you can get a healthy amount of exercise and turn off all electronics when you are going to bed, it can help with the amount of sleep you get as well as the quality of it.

Evidences show that sleep is essential for proper brain performance and everyday actions; as well as learning and long-term memory which pertain the most to sleep (Bibi et al, 2018). Without the suitable amount of sleep, you will not be able to function the best you can. You become sloppy and disorganized with not only your appearance but your thoughts as well. Sleep deprivation can also cause sleep disorders. Sleep disorders affect a lot of the American population.

Disorders exist when there is a lower quality of sleep which leads to impaired functioning or dangerous sleepiness (Buscemi et al, 2006). Sleep disorders can come from genetic problems or poor lifestyle habits, both of which are just as hard to cure. According to Buscemi 2006, alternative medicines can be used to help with sleep disorders. One of the most common medicines being melatonin.

Melatonin is an over the counter sleep medicine to help with the length and quality of sleep. In most cases melatonin helps with sleep, but it is not for everyone. Sleep disorders such as insomnia, sleep paralysis, and night terrors, can lead to daytime sleepiness and an increase in daily accidents (Shapiro and Dement, 1993).

Without a good amount of sleep, you can be at risk of these disorders. In my family, my mother takes prescription medicine to be able to fall asleep and stay asleep. I have always had a hard time falling asleep and staying asleep. I took melatonin for two years until it stopped helping my sleep schedule. Once I realized that my sleep wasn’t easy to fix, I thought about my mother’s issues and how it could have been genetically passed down to me. By understanding her struggles, I was able to figure out my own and correct my sleep schedule making me a happier person all around.

My third topic is tolerance and addiction. In this day and age, it is very easy for people to become addicted to something. The availability to get things that aren’t necessarily good for you has become extremely effortless. Since things are so accessible, people are able to get them in abundance.

When this happens, the tolerance for any drugs or substances become very high making people need more to buy and feed their addiction. Drug tolerance is closely related to withdraw and craving symptoms. When there is a craving, you feed into the addiction making your tolerance become higher (Siegel, 1999). Tolerance builds when a person doesn’t receive the same effects from a drug and requires more of it.

The more you give in, the higher your tolerance becomes because your body needs more and more of that substance to get the same affect. “Several studies suggest that drug tolerance makes drug abstinence more difficult and causes behavioral withdrawal symptoms” (Trivedi and Deth, 2015).

Tolerance and addiction go hand and hand, because of if one increases, it causes the other to increase as well. According to Trivedi 2015, depending on how high your drug tolerance is, it can change the outcome if your recovery will be successful or not. People can get addicted to the positive responses they get from what they are consuming.

When a person feel like they can not live without it, it becomes an addiction. Someone can easily become dependent on drugs because of the way it makes them feel and when the addiction starts, it comes with a growing tolerance. I can relate this back to my life because my mother had an addiction to opioid pills. Her addiction was very hard for her to break, so she continued to use them because they would make her feel like she needed them.

When taking opioids, they make you feel like you are in pain when in actuality you are not. This caused her to take more causing her to build a high tolerance for them. She later found out that she was taking way more than the average person could even take. Once she realized she was taking an unhealthy amount, she knew she had to fix the problem the pills created. It is a fight for her everyday because of an addiction to opioids and the tolerance caused.

Another topic I wanted to cover is the stability vs. change debate. The stability vs. change debate states that you either believe that you stay the same person throughout your whole life, or you believe that your personality can change over the years. Most studies suggest that someone’s personality doesn’t change that much from adolescence to adulthood but individual differences in personality stability can (Clausen and Jones, 1998).

Most of the time if a person is more self-realized at a young age, they have a greater chance of being on the stability side. Some things that effect if a person is changing or not is the change during maturity from childhood to adolescence and finally adulthood. Another factor is having new responsibilities and understanding that they require different things, along with failures in this department (Clausen and Jones, 1998).

These factors are something to keep in mind when considering if someone has changed throughout their life. Most people need some type of difficulty and gratification to make them go through a personality change. Personality stability is mostly studied in adults because your personality is said to mostly form between ages 20-30 (Blantny, 2007).

This research has put scientist behind because they should have been looking at all ages to figure out if stability and change happen throughout someone’s life (Blantny, 2007). I personally believe that people change throughout their entire lives. I have changed a lot just from my early high school years to the end of high school. From going though different struggles and successes in my life, I became very responsible and self-realized very fast.

This made me change a lot because I had to grow up fast to meet the needs of my situation. From these events in my life, I couldn’t stay the same. Being forced to change gave me a sense of responsibility. For these reasons in my personal life, I believe that people change as they go through life.

The last topic that I would like to talk about is stress and its basic concepts. Stress is something that many people in the world deal with. Depending on certain events in your life, it can determine if you’re more susceptible to stress or not. Different illnesses such as depression and anxiety can contribute to stress. It is not easy to deal with stress since different people react differently to given methods (Strumska, 2013).

Furthermore, stress can be contagious just like if someone is in a bad mood it could put you in a bad mood. When someone is feeling massive amounts of stress, it can be spread onto someone else as well. According to Strumska 2013, stress refers to a condition in which mental tension exceeds the specified amount level of functioning. Stress can actually make a condition you have worse. According to Liu et al, 2017, studies show that stress can increase symptoms of patients with certain illnesses.

Experiences of stress has been known to diminish health and adjust someone’s well-being (Liu et al, 2017). If you are successful in coping with stress, it can induce more motivation and positivity. Common ways of coping with stress are medication, exercise, and meditation. Certain methods work for different people. Meditation might not work for everyone who tries it because of different body types. According to Liu 2017, prolonged stress results in exhaustion of bodily resources.

This is why research on how individuals respond to stress is so emphasized. This shows up in my life a lot because of my stressful nature. Even when things could be going completely adequate in my life, I could still find something to stress about. My family has had a long history of anxiety and stress so it has lead me to believe that some of my habits could be genetic.

I was on stress reducing medication and it helped me cope with a lot of my stress, but it took many years to be able to find the right medication. Different stress coping mechanisms work for me but maybe not as well for my relatives. In all, stress is something I will always live with but as long as I try to cope with it, I can overcome it.

In conclusion, I am able to relate to these topics because they each played a role in my life. In reality, we all face a lot of these problems daily and work towards understanding them. Without knowing the research behind a problem or idea, there is no way to fix it. These topics have helped me to better understand things about myself and my family, as well as how to solve some of the long-lasting obstacles we all deal with.


  • Bibi, z. J., Vaezi, G., nasehi, m., seyed-, A. H., & Mohammad-Reza Zarrindast. (2018). Critical role of CA1 nicotinic receptors on memory acquisition deficit under induction of total sleep deprivation and REM sleep deprivation. International Clinical Neuroscience Journal, 5(1), 11-20. Retrieved from
  • Buscemi, N., Vandermeer, B., Hooton, N., Pandya, R., Tjosvold, L., Hartling, L., . . . Baker, G. (2006). Efficacy and safety of exogenous melatonin for secondary sleep disorders and sleep disorders accompanying sleep restriction: Meta-analysis. BMJ : British Medical Journal, 332(7538), 385. doi:
  • Choo, W., Lee, W., Venkatraman, V., Sheu, F., & Chee, M. W. L. (2005). Dissociation of cortical regions modulated by both working memory load and sleep deprivation and by sleep deprivation alone. NeuroImage, 25(2), 579-587. doi:
  • Clausen, J. A., & Jones, C. J. (1998). Predicting personality stability across the life p: The role of competence and work and family commitments. Journal of Adult Development, 5(2), 73-83. doi:
  • Daw, J., Shanahan, M., Harris, K. M., Smolen, A., Haberstick, B., & Boardman, J. D. (2013). Genetic sensitivity to peer behaviors: 5HTTLPR, smoking, and alcohol consumption. Journal of Health and Social Behavior, 54(1), 92-108. doi:
  • Shapiro, C. M., & Dement, W. C. (1993). ABC of sleep disorders. impact and epidemiology of sleep disorders. BMJ : British Medical Journal, 306(6892), 1604. doi:
  • Siegel, S. (1999). Drug anticipation and drug addiction. the 1998 H. david archibald lecture: (alcoholism and drug addiction). Addiction, 94(8), 1113-24. Retrieved from
  • Stone, R. D. (2003). The cloudy crystal ball: Genetics, child abuse, and the perils of predicting behavior. Vanderbilt Law Review, 56(5), 1557-1590. Retrieved from
    Strumska-Cylwik, L. (2013). STRESS AND COMMUNICATION (I.E. ON STRESS IN COMMUNICATION AND COMMUNICATION UNDER STRESS). International Journal of Arts & Sciences, 6(3), 419-441. Retrieved from
  • Liu, J. J. W., Vickers, K., Reed, M., & Hadad, M. (2017). Re-conceptualizing stress: Shifting views on the consequences of stress and its effects on stress reactivity. PLoS One, 12(3) doi:
  • Trivedi, M. S., & Deth, R. (2015). Redox-based epigenetic status in drug addiction: A potential contributor to gene priming and a mechanistic rationale for metabolic intervention. Frontiers in Neuroscience, doi:

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