Is it over-rated or under-rated? I guess it depends on your stage in life. When I was in high school and college, I could sleep for what my mom probably thought was forever. I recall her banging pots and pouring water on me just to prompt me to respond to her failed attempts at waking me. She would deny this. When you are a teenager, you could care less about family breakfast on a Saturday morning. Now I would give anything for someone else to make me breakfast. And the clean-up.
Nevertheless, my college years were spent sleeping as well. I am naturally a night owl, which works well with the college lifestyle. I was wise enough to never schedule a class too early in the morning. Yet, there were those occasions when I had to rise early. Early was before 7AM. I remember staying up so late that when I woke up, I literally felt sick to my stomach. The biggest transition for me after college was waking up in the morning. Taxes, health insurance, FICA, being completely reliant on myself financially, none of those mattered as much as having to get up early. I worked less than 1/2 a mile from my apartment and I think I spent most mornings putting my make-up on at work. The truth is, no matter how many years I spend trying to perfect the art of getting ready for work in 20 minutes, I am not capable of such a task.
Old age has set in though. Now that I have been through the grief cycle in regards to the fact that our society only runs on and respects morning people schedules, I am surviving a morning person's world. It comes at a cost though. Going to sleep is a process for me. I need at least an hour to unwind before I actually fall asleep. This is a long process. Not really efficient considering I value efficiency. Once I get to sleep, I still have the ability to sleep forever. Although, my body has hit it's natural adult rhythm. I am able to get up and function in a morning person's world, to a certain degree.
Life is full of transitions. As an adult, I think sleep is under-rated. We don't seem to appreciate the function sleep serves in our life. Our minds seem to take over and just go into auto-drive. We rarely rest and napping seems to be for the lazy. We have to set goals at work each year, so my goal will be to nap on my lunch break. A nice nap full of dreams and drool. The best kind of sleep.