Be More Productive By Changing Your Sleeping Patterns

Coins and clock
30Sep, 2018

Steal your time back

Noticed how quickly the days are zipping by? Ever said to yourself “What the heck happened to my day?”. Do you want to be more productive and do much more each day? You can be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns.

Forget micromanagement which only adds minutes to your day and extra white hairs to your head – go after the real time thief. The real criminal which steals HOURS of your life each day.

By changing your sleep patterns you can get control of your life-  it’s called Polyphasic Sleeping.

I’ll cover:

  • Carrots – why you’d want to change your patterns
  • Sticks – How much time is lost to sleep
  • Are We There Yet – How long it will take your body to adjust
  • You Can Do It – What motivations may keep you on track
  • Yellow Alert – Dangers to changing your body’s sleeping patterns
  • We Surrender – Will your body revert back to circadian rhythm?

And provide helpful tips on:

  • Any Port In A Storm – places to catch a quick nap
  • Zzzz – How to fall asleep quicker/easier
  • Chomp – Eating/drinking patterns that may help you
  • Beep Boop – Equipment and Applications that can help you
  • Scholar – The abridged science behind it
  • Everyman – Different sleeping/waking patterns to help milk more out of your days

 

 

Change your sleep cycle and get more out of your days

Why You’d Want To Be More Productive By Changing Your Sleeping Patterns

The hours lost to (over) sleeping has been well documented, hours that you can do whatever you want with.

★ Imagine discovering time to spend with your loved ones and learning a new skill.

★ Extra time to read the books you’ve been putting off since your childhood.

★ Time to start/build/work on a new/existing business

★ Research new ways to make money

★ Catch up on your personal correspondence

★ Write a blog/diary

★ Be more sociable and get away from work

★ Spend time meditating and considering where you want your life to go

★ Get back to nature – go on hikes or spend some time on a plant or garden

★ Feel superior to people around you

★ Not feel the need to rush and feel a weight lift off your shoulders

★ Recover your “me time” that gets lost in relationships and when looking after kids

★ Get more done (generally) and be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns

There are an infinity of reasons to claw back time and precious few for not at least trying to get more time into your life.

 

How Much Time Is Lost To Sleep

There is no exact, universal, number as every physiology is different (and thank heaven for differences – though there are some who want to force people to conform) but, generally, people fall into two categories. Those who get more than they need (and don’t know it) and those who don’t get enough (and are painfully aware of it). Although this blog is designed for the majority (who are unconscious that they’re loosing time) it can also help those who are sleep-deprived by giving them suggestions on how to schedule more sleep, plan places for napping, re-think their diet, and strategies to get them to sleep faster.

Cartoon man in garbage bin
Are you throwing your life away?

Generally 7 hours of sleep is considered the base for most people. If you are sleeping more than 7 hours you have the flexibility to reduce that and the human body can be trained to operate on a lot less than that.

Six hours of sleep is a comparatively easier goal for most people to shoot for (personally I’m used to a five hour sleep so changing my sleep patterns was easy but others are not so lucky).

Most people are sleeping 8 (or more) hours a day and have gotten so used to it that they feel “out of it” if they don’t get their “required” dose. The human body is incredible and will adjust to any condition or situation required of it. If they were to adjust to six hours a day (if normally 8) then they would get an extra 30 DAYS every year. Thirty days when they could be doing anything they wanted instead of lying about unconscious.

Pop Quiz: Which is more important- light sleep or deep sleep?

Naturally it’s deep sleep –  the human body requires only 1-2 hours of REM (deep) sleep each day. REM takes up just 20% of the normal sleeping time. That means the 6 hours (or so) remaining is not absolutely essential to survival and it’s completely up to you on how you wish to spend it.

Most people find it hard to go straight to REM sleep without training (or if longer, most restful sleep, is unattainable at that time) and hence leave it up to their bodies as how to best handle the sleeping cycle. Many successful people have learned to adjust their sleeping patterns to be more productive by changing their sleeping patterns and you can too. Maybe you want to go back to the top…?

 

Coins and clock
Time is money

 

Adjusting to Be More Productive By Changing Your Sleeping Patterns

I won’t lie to you- it won’t be easy.

You’re changing a pattern you’ve had for your entire life. A cycle that’s been ingrained into you through nature (rising and setting of the sun, a hard-coded, genetically patterned,  circadian rhythm), your family/upbringing (your parents weren’t happy if you woke them up in the middle of the night), your education (wake up at a certain time to get to school, going to bed at a certain time to wake up for school), relationships (patterns formed when sharing a bed/living space with another), society (shops are generally only opened during the day and most people prefer phone calls [etc] between certain times during the day), and work (standard hours to get up to go to work and to get home afterwards).

Only your strength of will and desire for a better life will get your through it.

Luckily others have been there (learned how to be more productive by changing their sleeping patterns) before you and proved that it may not take many days (as it did me) to change your sleeping patterns.

But it won’t feel like it ☺︎ As you’ll have more hours in the day, and more time to do whatever you want to do- each day may feel like a week. Your concept of time will become skewed as it begins to become more aware of the time that is available. This skewing will be excellent for you when you’re doing things you enjoy but will not feel good as your body lumbers from one hour to the next, bone-tired, waiting for itself to adjust. Think a weeks-worth of jet-lag and you wouldn’t be too far from the truth.

Fight Your Way to Victory

You’ll have to fight your body every step of the way if you want to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns. Your brain will go crazy trying to think of every excuse under the sun to get you to spend longer in bed. Your partner will grumble and groan as their own cycle is disrupted with yours (luckily they’ll get used to it faster than you will and, within a few days, sleep right through you getting up earlier than them). You’ll start thinking about new and interesting ways to destroy your alarm clock or come up with ANY excuse as to ignore or snooze it. People who you look for support from will start trying to “help you” by nagging you about “needing 8 hours sleep” instead of encouraging you. People and events around you seem to irritate you (or you become de-sensitised to things that used to annoy you) as your mind starts to focus on what becomes truly essential to your life.

There are ways to adjust to the changing cycle quicker (like starving yourself) but, from personal experience, there were two milestones (at least for me).

Within a week I was comfortable with the changes to my life and adjusting everyone’s schedule (and forward planning trips and working locations) and a month to feel restful after each nap and fully integrate the changed schedule into my life. I certainly was more productive and you can also be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns.

I’m not alone in my experiences, though a number of people were able to convert to the changed cycle MUCH faster than I did.

They took days instead of weeks.

Ambition
Do you want it? Do you REALLY want it?

 

How To Keep Motivated

You’ve really gotta want it.

You’ve gotta need it like oxygen.

I’m not talking about “I want to speak Japanese” but rather “If I’m not able to speak fantastic Japanese within the next 3 months I will not be able to eat and will die penniless on the streets of Tokyo” kind of want.

There’s simply no other way. Burn your bridges and get ready to stoke up the fire in your heart because there’s only ONE way you can survive and that’s through victory. You gotta know (on a very deep level) that you’ll be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns.

Because your body will fight you.

Think of being hungry, having to wait at least another hour for dinner, and having a delicious, sugar-filled cookie taped to your left hand- and you’re not really supposed to eat it.

Then multiply that by 100.

Girl With Lovers In Her Eye
What would you do to get what you want?

If you’ve ever had to discipline yourself to an extreme level (say if you’ve successfully dieted, had to train for marathon runnings, or had to maintain a healthy head-space while living with your ex-partner [the breakup was their choice] and their new squeeze under the same roof until you’ve had the money to move out) then you’ve gone through this before but… if you haven’t gone through AT LEAST one of these before then you’ll probably going to need some help / support.

Two things got me through- one was set-in-stone goals. I wrote up EXACTLY what I wanted and the time frames I wanted them in. I became VERY clear in my motivations and kept these goals within easy eyeball and re-enforced them every morning. I set rewards for myself for achieving things like buying a certain flavoured popcorn or watching a movie. If you also set goals then you may find it easier to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns.

I had daily, weekly, and monthly goals and, for the most part, I was able to achieve them.

The second thing was allowing my body to go through changes and providing mental space for doing so. I was tired and so allowed myself extra time to get to locations, I knew my mood wasn’t dependable so I didn’t force myself to have any social interactions which I knew to be detrimental to my mood or purely for someone else’s benefit (beyond my loved ones of course). I didn’t punish myself for not reaching goals/things that I was aiming for (the goals were for motivation and to stop my brain from giving up the fight- the journey was more important than the destination).

I educated my loved ones on how they could truly help me- by being supportive and by avoiding any opinions or suggestions (no matter how they felt like it was necessary). I wanted to SHARE my journey with them- not to have its path dictated to me. You also need people to support your quest to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns.

You may find your motivation is best stoked through the words of others in that case I’d highly recommend motivational speakers like Tony Robins or Robert Kiyosaki, or material by Rhonda Byrne.

You may need a pet you can turn to when you take a break (who doesn’t disturb you when you’re working), allocate time to spending with friends or in making new ones, or have something of nature you can visit or tend to in order to re-focus yourself. Something natural that can distract/reward you while you seek to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns.

Meditation is invaluable in re-focussing the mind though, in my case, I found my 20 minute allocations for snoozing almost impossible to snooze through and so they became times for me to meditate and reflect in.

Maintaining a steady “full steam ahead” is unsustainable and leads to early burn-out so give yourself time to re-cooperate your energies/motivations. These “recharges” will help you to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns. Maybe you want to go back to the top…?

 

Finger in Mouse Trap
Be Aware

Possible Dangers Of Trying To Be More Productive By Changing Your Sleeping Patterns

Naturally there are dangers to everything but to be forewarned is to be forearmed and be ready if any of these raise their ugly heads.

The greatest danger may be yourself in expecting too much of yourself or getting disappointed in if doesn’t work- give yourself room and space to try being more productive by changing your sleeping patterns. Give yourself such a overtly large and motivational goal/desire that you won’t be able to help yourself and you’ll simply HAVE to complete it. Although you’ll want to tell the whole world about this feet you’re about it do or in the process of doing be aware that most people’s responses will be counter-productive at best (which may demotivate you). Once you’ve succeeded their responses will mostly be awe and congratulation (and quite a bit of jealousy).

Forcing your body to work on less sleep than it is used to will force your body to pull out EVERY stop, push every button it can reach, to get you to hit the hay as it expects you to do. It will whisper sweet nothings in a smooth and buttery voice- seducing you into having just one more minute of sleep “it couldn’t hurt, go on, you deserve it” while you fight to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns. It will put sand in your eyes, blur your vision, befuddle your mind, and fill your heart with unwarranted fears. All in the sake of keeping things “as they’ve always been” (because it’s how you’ve survived all this time so it must be the ONLY way you can survive from now on) and to stop you trying to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns.

On the road to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns you’ll have to get ready for your bodies “dirty tricks” – give yourself extra time to get to places, think things through carefully and slowly before acting on them, take a bit longer in the shower, make sure your partner is aware of the effort you’re making and forgive you for any micro-aggressions they may perceive in you, eat and drink in moderation, and have a bottle of water (not coffee) within easy arms reach at all times. Be aware you may not be as physically or mentally able during the transitional phase as you were before (or afterwards) and make allowances for that.

Woman swinging over a cliff
Life is beautiful and dangerous

Your eating habits will be out of whack and so plan for smaller meals/portions and try to not have them close to nap/sleep times otherwise you won’t be comfortable and feel bloated (there is more information about this in the Food And Drink section).

You probably already know someone who simply isn’t human until they’ve had their coffee. Caffeine is their bodies signal to “wake up and be sociable”. Unfortunately your mood may also become something you’ll have to be more aware of and so be kind to yourself and those around you as your changing perceptions may change the way you present yourself to the outside world. This will peter out eventually but be very evident in the first few weeks of you trying to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns.

Speaking of myself, I didn’t become more “moody” or “snappy” but rather more aware of others and how much I valued my friends and didn’t value others deliberately wasting my time to boost their own sense of self-worth.

You’ll still be the same person and treat everyone the same way but you’ll value your own time and your friends time more highly. Not everyone can appreciate you when you aim to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns.

Another danger is scheduling conflicts and travel times (although this is more of a consideration than a danger). Pre-planning is required to make this work. For example you can arrange to get to work 30 minutes before you have to be there in order to have a snooze before the day starts. Most buildings have at least one office that is empty (especially during lunch time), most canteens allow pre-ordering of food for you to pick up at specific times, and most bosses would prefer it if their workers were as alert at 4:30pm as they are at 9:30am so most companies would be amenable to you making requests- whether they know it or not they all want you to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns. Heck they may even change their modes of operation when they see how consistently productive you are- no matter the time of day. And if they aren’t amendable to you trying to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns then you have still have a number different options (like changing schedules, sleep patterns, reporting your boss to their superiors, getting a better job, or even simply laughing it all off). Similarly social visits and other scheduled events can be planned around your needs. I personally pack my sleeping visor whenever I need to go somewhere outside of the ordinary.

There’s also a very real chance that changing someone’s sleep patterns can increase, or uncover, pre-existing mental problems like depression or latent aggression. Fighting nature to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns requires real strength of character and isn’t for everyone.

 

Man on motobike looking back
Looking back…

 

How easy is it to get back to normal sleeping patterns?

As easy as falling asleep. Your body has spent decades learning what sleeping patterns are normal and, even you spent a year sleeping polyphasically in order to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns, it would take less than a week to revert.

That being said, once you realise just how productive your body COULD be you’ll find yourself wanting to wake up early. You’ll find yourself valuing every moment of every day more than you would’ve before and you’ll be proud that, even for a short time, you beat the system.

You fought against nature itself and won.

 

Shoe on Go on Monopoly board
Let’s Go!

 

Secrets of Sleeping Stealthily

Places

Girl With Secret
Shhh!

It’s surprisingly easy to find suitable places to sleep if you want to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns- once you begin to look for them. If I drove to my destination I’d always have my car that I could take a nap in (as long as I could find some shade and could crack a window) but I wasn’t limited to just my Commodore.

Naturally there’s always the expensive option if you want to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns- you can rent a hotel room.

Most of them allow check in after 2pm but, if you ask nicely, some will allow you to “drop off your bags in them” as early as 10am. Australia doesn’t have a popular option of renting rooms by the hour (I miss Japan sometimes)- probably as they’d been seen as brothel to the authorities- but there are still yet other options if you want to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns.

Some cities do businesses which have “snooze rooms” where you can purchase an hour to nap and there are sleeping pods available if you look hard enough to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns. For the price of lunchtime meal you can sleep in relative comfort. If you don’t mind the noise and flashing lights there’s always a seat in a movie cinema – don’t forget your mask and earmuffs.

As for free options you are spoilt for choice if you want to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns. The best option would be your own bed (if it’s close enough) or a bed/couch of a nearby friend’s accomodation. I’ve slept in vacated rooms/offices at work (with and without my bosses knowledge), libraries (some have flat couches seemingly built for sleeping), in airports (my favourite was Singapore) and on the grass in a park in Sydney. I found a tongue in cheek article on places to kip- though I wouldn’t recommend sleeping in your own work cubicle if/when you want to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns.

Luckily travelling to and from work took well after 30 minutes and, if I wasn’t driving, I could always able to squeeze a good 20 minute nap in before and after work.

Comfort

Being comfortable is important if you want to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns. If I was in a place dedicated for sleeping (ie. a bed) this wasn’t a problem but at other times you may have to improvise. A jacket/jumper (no wool or leather please) or a backpack (careful nothing hard was inside) would suit for a makeshift pillow.

Child Sleeping
Snooze

I’d try to find a quiet place where I wouldn’t be disturbed (by people, lights, or loud noises) and I’d use my mask, which blocked out visual stimuli and piped music directly into my ears) to help me. You may have to be equally flexible if you want to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns.

By the time my siesta was due I was more then motivated to sleep wherever was socially convenient. But I was always sure that I’d have tucked away anything sharp and/or of value so I didn’t have anything to worry about (unconsciously or otherwise).

If possible I would be in clothes where crumpling wouldn’t matter and I had ready access to deodorant and breath mints (I always carry toothpaste and brush) and ready excuse as to why I was away from everyone (if anyone would be nosy enough to inquire and I didn’t feel like educating them to the benefits of an adjusted sleeping schedule). You may similarly find yourself in this situation if you want to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns.

Have a bottle of water to sup before and after your snooze and try to be sure there isn’t any drafts that might effect you while you aim to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns. I play “nature sounds” to get me in a sleepy mood and keep myself dozing (my favourite is rainstorms minus the thunder) though others use mediative music.

As for sanitation this is an important issue so you may be better served finding a place and/or section of carpet that is largely unspoilt and as clean as possible. Your dignity is as equally important as your desire to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns.

Schedule

Alarm Clock
Set it early and then forget it

Always set your alarm before you get comfortable, and be sure to use a waking tone that doesn’t set your teeth on edge. If you have an iPhone try the “Constellation” tone, if you have an Android then go and buy and iPhone and use the “Constellation” tone. Just joking, I’m sure there’s a soothing tone available on that platform too.

Depending on your polyphasic sleeping pattern be sure to add an extra minute or two to your timer (for the first week) to give your body time to reprogram itself for a snooze as you build towards your aim to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns. If you set it for longer after the first week your body will start to expect it and you’ll start to loose more and more of that precious extra time your wanting to claw back.

Naturally put your phone into flight mode and be sure nothing is scheduled to happen before your due to wake up.

State of Mind

Be sure to write down anything (or keep an electronic diary as I do) before you lay down/position yourself for a snooze or your subconscious mind will keep working on that idea and it will keep you awake. Say to yourself that you are dedicating this time to a sleep/snooze and that you really need/want it. Allow yourself the luxury of having this time to yourself. Don’t fall into the trap of planning what you will do after the snooze as this will keep you awake, if anything pops into your mind grab your phone/notebook and jot it down.

In order to fall asleep some people count sheep, others meditate, but for me I have to ensure my head is clear of all thoughts, my limbs are comfortable, and I’m able to allow myself to relax, before I can drop off to sleep. Maybe you want to go back to the top…?

 

A Salad, Food and Drink
Eat and Drink for the occasion

 

Food and Drink To Boost Productivity

Naturally this is dependant on your bodies needs and it’s best to speak to a qualified dietician before making a plan for this, but consider having smaller portions spaced out over your waking hours and leaving at least an hour between meals and snoozes and at least 2 hours before your major sleep.

There are some foods (like turkey) which may make you sleepy while others (like cinnamon) may wake you up – it’s all very dependant on your own bodies chemistry though I’ve found “heavier foods” (like anything deep fried or any food item that heavily features cheese) makes my body feel awkwardly unable to nap. Salads are the perfect go-between for me, I can make any salad hearty with fish/chicken or light with a variety of nuts).

Some people may put on weight if they don’t adjust their portion sizes and eating times. Make sure you get plenty of exercise to keep your mind clear and keep burning calories. Once you have set up a sleeping schedule make sure you stick to it otherwise your body will likely put on weight (converting all food into energy for fear of a future famine) and throw away your scales. You may be better suited for smaller meals spaced out to different times of the day and consult a dietician as to what types of foot are better/more beneficial for your figure/physique. For myself I was recommended to remove all carbs from my diet as they would go straight to my hips (not recommended to/for everyone).

Woman At CrossRoads
There are no wrong choices – only consequences

I would highly recommend giving up caffeine of every kind. Yes this may be painful for most people (especially those who value getting more out of their day) but having artificial boosters like caffeine (in coffee or soft drinks) will make falling asleep harder and confuse your body while you are awake. In the long term, while you are polyphasic sleeping, they will make the entire process harder for you.

You may miss drinking coffee and energy drinks. Your body is designed to have naps during the day, it’s built for it. Modern society has sought to blind you to this by indoctrinating you partake in caffeine (or similar) drinks and/or sugary foods to artificially increase your awareness levels. Society has re-enforced this by making working environments places where it’s very difficult to take scheduled naps in and re-enforced caffeine drinking while working or while on a break. Drinking stimulants will throw out the sleeping patterns you are trying to enforce and make you less aware of your own body and it’s needs. Don’t worry, you can still stay social- just switch to tea ☺︎ and schedule your day so you don’t get “caught out” and need some coffee to “tie you over”. Even missing one scheduled snooze can mean your body will need extra time to get back on track.

Alcohol is also not recommended as it also screws with your sleeping patterns. Some will argue that it helps them get to sleep at night but those people also forget that it’s the reason they may wake up in the middle of the night or wake up in the morning dehydrated, sleepy, or with a hangover as it is a natural de-hydrating liquid. It squeezes the water out of your system and confuses the heck out of your digestive system. Not to mention how hard the body has to work to expel the poison (and yes, your body treats it as such), how comparatively expensive it is, and how it will more-likely effect you if your stomach isn’t very full of food before it is ingested. Yes I love a drop or six thousand of it (especially if I’m socialising) but I also recognise how much extra fat it puts on my body if I’m unable to burn it off.

I’m not banning you drinking or eating anything but you’ll come to notice how what you ingest truly effects you the more you take charge of your day.

It’s not recommended to use medicines to help you go to sleep as their effects can’t be limited by you and may lead to dependancy. Personally my body was so tired it didn’t require any barbiturates to fall asleep because, by the third day, I was so tired I didn’t care where I was when it was time to kip. Maybe you want to go back to the top…?

 

Eye Mask That Plays Music
Things like this help block out visuals and noise

 

Equipment to Help You Be More Productive By Changing Your Sleeping Patterns

There is a myriad of equipment that can help you get to sleep and stay there. There are lights that slowly illuminate over your bed (while music slowly increases in volume) when it’s time to wake and when you are away from home you can buy masks and earplugs to help you reach the land of nod.

Personally I purchased a mask like the one above and connected it to my phone via bluetooth.  It is initially awkward but a lot more comfortable that using a mask with earplugs or seperate headphones.

Carrying around a surface to sleep on would be quite beneficial but unwieldy to carry every day. If you have an alternate suggestion feel free to drop me a line.

 

iphone applications fruit
Applications to help you

iPhone Applications to Help You Sleep Productively

As an iPhone user I can recommend a number of applications I’ve used to help change my sleeping patterns, I’m sure there are a number of similar softwares available for Android devices.

Naturally this list is non-exhaustive and may not be updated to suit changing market and iPhone IOS/model changes so you may have to do a bit of research on more current applications to help you with polyphasic sleeping.

 

This neat app allows you to view the various “standard” polyphasic sleep patterns that currently exist. Naturally you can make up your own but these form a great base to work off.

App - Polyphasic Sleep
Discover a suitable Polyphasic Sleeping Pattern

If you get the paid version of the app you can adjust the hours to better suit your schedule and it will balance out the nap times and lengths around your +/- settings. Personally I found it a great start and I, mathematically, worked out the best times for sleeping around my schedule. I’m using a modified version of the Everyman II (which is 3 hours of sleep a night plus 3 x 20 minute snoozes through the day) which I’ve adapted into a 6 hour model (5 hours at night and 3 x 20 minute during the day).

You can work your way up to the “Uberman” which is a 24 hour waking cycle with six 20 minute snoozes divided evenly over the entire 24 hours- a total of only two hours sleep every single day.

 

Finding an alarm that plays over bluetooth is surprisingly rare. The native iPhone alarm plays ONLY through the handset and so I was lucky to find this little gem.

App - Private Alarm
Alarms which play in the background over bluetooth

It’s very clunky to use as it was designed by someone operating in a foreign language with very little design sense but it’s a little beauty.

It operates in the background (another, surprisingly rare, feature), you can play audio (bluetooth) while your alarm is counting down (it’s relaxing to listen to rain or ocean waves), you can set multiple alarms for exact times or length of times, and yes it does play the alarm through the headphones when it’s time to get up.

Yes it’s design and English is awkward and there is no way to disable the ads, but there is simply no other app (in the last decade) that does what it does. Maybe you want to go back to the top…?

 

 

Asian Girl Sleeping On Desk-2
The science behind the sleep

The Science behind Being More Productive By Changing Your Sleeping Patterns

Harvard has has a great study about sleep, referenced in HelpGuide.org, about how much sleep the human body has adapted to using. There are a number of articles on the difference between REM and non-REM sleep and how much is required every day.

The idea that starving yourself to help with jet-lag recovery was extrapolated by the mass media (who, hopefully, no one in their right mind believes) from a scientific study about mice (the original/source article was surprisingly hard to find but painfully easy to find the falsehoods extrapolated from it). There is a grain of truth to the false articles, as it’s much easier to sleep when food is not being actively digested- however it is equally difficult to sleep on an empty stomach.

There’s an excellent article explaining the pro’s, cons, physiological, and societal pressures behind our established sleeping patterns as well as polyphasic sleeping. Maybe you want to go back to the top…?

 

Eye From Dollar Note
Sleeping patterns

 

Example Sleeping Patterns

Most people are monophasic sleepers (they sleep only once a day) but there are cultures that identify the natural dip most humans feel around the middle of each day and cater to it (think siesta’s). This is called biphasic sleep to keep it in line with the other latin-derived names. Mono (one) phasic (phase) sleep and poly (many) phasic sleep.

The number of naps and length of sleep each day is highly dependant on the comfort levels of the individual but which ever cycle is chosen you’ve gotta be very strict about following it otherwise it will VERY easily be ignored by the body in the favour of it’s pre-existing patterns (which is monophasic for most people) and you’d have to work even harder, for longer, to get into a polyphasic pattern.

This is covered very comprehensively by Paul Jordan on the Sleep Habits website.

As for myself I can only recommend the Everyman (I used an adjusted Everyman II) schedule though there are people who have used the Uberman to great effect (3 or so hours a night) but only one person in history who has claimed to use the Dymaxion sleeping pattern consistently – two hours of sleep, divided into four parts of 30 minutes, every 24 hours.

 

Afterword

Yes, I’ve given you a lot to think about. It’s not for everyone but the determined. It’s all up to you – do you want to be more productive by changing your sleeping patterns? Maybe you want to go back to the top.