I’ve admitted before that I have trouble sleeping. Since I get up between 4am and 5am most days, I am exhausted by as early as 7pm. Unfortunately, if I go to bed earlier like at 9pm, I am likely to be awake in the middle of the night. So I was just getting less sleep most nights and hoping I wouldn’t wake up.
Instead of 8 hours of sleep, Try two stages
Then I caught this article posted by a few Facebook friends, The Myth of the 8 hour sleep. It gives a whole historical perspective to sleep but the essence is that you actually do better by sleeping in two stages:
But the majority of doctors still fail to acknowledge that a consolidated eight-hour sleep may be unnatural.
“Over 30% of the medical problems that doctors are faced with stem directly or indirectly from sleep. But sleep has been ignored in medical training and there are very few centres where sleep is studied,” he says.
Should you abandon 8 hours of sleep?
I decided to give this a try. So last night, I made sure I had things to do if I woke up. I don’t want to wake everyone else. But I wrote my to-do list which is so hard to do at night when I am exhausted and then I read a worksheet for the first client this morning and made notes. I still wasn’t tired so I gave me permission to read a few pages in a book and found myself getting tired again.
Jacobs suggests that the waking period between sleeps, when people were forced into periods of rest and relaxation, could have played an important part in the human capacity to regulate stress naturally.
When stress interrupts our sleep, we can either be annoyed or try a different path. I woke up and have already completed multiple things on the to-do list and find I am more alert than the nights I fret about being awake.
I know I am not alone. I have clients who complain they were not sleeping and some admitted it was taking a toll on them.
What do you think? Getting a good night’s sleep is critical to successful functioning whether you are an entrepreneur, employee, stay-at-home mom, job seeker, or student. Do you think giving yourself permission to try two-stage sleep would help?
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