Friday, April 1, 2011

Alternative Sleep Schedules

I hate sleep.  It is boring, it is lame, it is a waste of time.
I hate the fact that sleep is a necessity.  All of the time I spend sleeping could be spent on learning and improving myself.

I have been engaging in an "every other night" sleep pattern for some time.  That is, I pull an all nighter one night then sleep at a normal time the next night.  I've been able to function semi-normally with this pattern, except there are some noticeable side-effects that occur after I've been up for ~35 hours, such as twitching, irritability, jumpiness, slight hallucinations, depression, increased mucus production, and more.

I may feel moderately normal and be able to function properly, but I know it is having negative impacts on my body.  Therefore, I've decided not to continue with this sleep pattern.

However, I am still searching for ways to maximize the amount of time I'm awake without it having a negative impact on my health.  An interesting alternative to the monophasic (traditional) sleep pattern, is called the Uberman sleep schedule.  It a polyphasic sleep pattern.  That means sleeping multiple times during the day.  The goal of the Uberman sleep schedule is to maximize your REM sleep and minimize your non-REM sleep.  This is accomplished by going into REM sleep within a couple minutes and staying in REM sleep until you wake up.  REM sleep is the phase of sleep that benefits your mind.  The actual pattern of the Uberman sleep schedule is six 20-30 minute naps spread evenly throughout the day.

This doesn't happen instantly.  You have to adjust to it, which may take a few weeks.  If you are interested in the Uberman sleep schedule and the effects of it, you can read this blog which is a daily journal of someone who attempted the Uberman sleep schedule.  I plan on implementing this sleep pattern when I have a more open schedule, just to see what it's like.

Here are some other sleep patterns:

Biphasic sleep seems pointless because you barely gain any time, if any.  The Everyman sleep cycle is interesting, but it seems like you wouldn't gain much time.  Dymaxion sleep is also interesting, it seems like an altered version of the Uberman sleep schedule.

The other alternative is sleep learning.  I don't know how effective sleep learning is, if I find out that sleep learning does actually work, then it might be the best option, because you get the full 8 hours of sleep.

However, if you were really adamant about utilizing every hour of your day, you could do the Uberman sleep cycle and engage in sleep learning while you nap.

That's it for now.   

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