Nail sleeping and you will improve your life dramatically. I’m a strong lover of sleeping. I love sleeping (can’t emphasize that enough). But I don’t sleep 8 hours a day. And I feel awesome all day long!
Do you want to have more time to read your favorite book, watch that new TV series, fool around with friends, or just spend your free hours on Reddit or Facebook? I think I can help you add more hours to your day!
Seriously Cut Down on Caffeine
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Break off the nasty habit of drinking too much coffee if it affects you too much. I know, I know, to some people like me coffee is basically water. But if your sleep is shallow or you are having troubles calling a sleek sleep and you drink coffee, you might want to stop or at least cut down on that.
If you can go on a single day without drinking coffee (or having caffeine) you will immediately notice the difference of your sleep quality.
Try it tomorrow. Don’t drink anything with caffeine.
No chocolates for you!
No ice cream!
No soft drinks too!
Improve Sleep Quality
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Want to up your game some more? How about exercising thrice a week for at least half an hour, just enough to keep your heart pumping and your clothes soaked in sweat.
Another thing is to meditate. By simply sitting still for ten or fifteen minutes a day, letting your mind wander off to just about anything, don’t control your thoughts, just let it flow. Others would tell you to clear your mind of anything, but most of the time that’s counterintuitive because your mind will always find a way to think of something stupid (but that doesn’t mean clearing your mind doesn’t work, it does!).
What does meditating and exercising result to? They lessen your stress level. When you are experiencing low stress days, your sleep becomes more efficient. And when your sleep is more efficient (high quality!), then you’ll need less of it!
Don’t Sleep In One Go
In the earliest of days of mankind, people used to split their sleep three times a day. Currently, most people do a monophasic sleep. There are few people who do biphasic or polyphasic sleep, and there’s a reason for that.
So, going back, hundreds of years ago even before electricity was invented, people didn’t sleep in one go. They slept in two sessions, with the first half lasting about 4 to 5 hours and the second half of about 3 hours or until morning. Of course they had sex and ate food during midnight.
Now, going back. Sleeping 8 hours straight was never natural for us humans, but it has become the norm now since many people work during daytime for at least 8 hours too. Is this your schedule? 8 hours of sleep and 8 hours of working, leaving you with only 8 hours for yourself, but at least another two hours is spent daily for commute and preparing yourself for work or school. You have six hours daily.
Just six hours. Thinking of writing a book, starting a blog, meeting a friend, or playing video games? Six hours is not enough!
If you have the luxury of playing around with your schedule, why not try other types of sleep?
Credits go to 4hourlife for the chart above.
Find Your Golden Hour
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Do all of the important things for yourself in the morning, preferably from 4am to 9am if your schedule allows. Exercise, read a good book, clean the house, everything that you think would help your personal life. Breakfast with friends, a walk in the park, do it in the mornings.
You’ll then find out that you’ll have more energy for work throughout the day because you have already accomplished the fun stuff. But it can go both ways. Finish all the work you need to do and take the rest of the day for less-than-stellar activities.
But if you are a creature of the night…
Find the best time when you are the most productive and blast everything during those hours. Personally, I am more efficient and creative from 1am to 3am. But whenever my sleep cycle shifts to the mornings (by choice), I’m most effective from 5am to 8am as long as it’s still quiet outside and the sky still has a tinge of darkness.
Find your “Golden Hour(s)” and you’ll have more enough time for other things.
Plan Your Sleep Wisely
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Do not, under any circumstances, roll around your bed waiting for sleep to take over. Stand up and go walk around your house, sit in the living room until you feel sleepy. Do not condition your mind and body to get accustomed to you not sleeping when you are in bed. This programs you to think that it’s okay to stay awake, and so you stay awake.
There are only two things you should do in bed: sleep or sex.
Moving on, give yourself at least 15 minutes of “empty time” before sleeping. If you plan on sleeping by 11pm, you should finish everything you are doing by 10:45pm. Turn off the TV, drink your chamomile tea, wash your face, everything before 10:45. Then let yourself be bored to sleep.
Another important thing to note is that you should sleep in cycles of 90 minutes. That means you shouldn’t sleep for just 2 hours, which is 120 minutes. 3 hours is totally fine (180 minutes). In fact, you can try it tonight. Set your alarm clock to wake you up after 180 minutes and when you wake up, you’ll feel energetic and refreshed. Why?
On average, a sleep cycle lasts for 90 minutes. When you wake up in the middle of a sleep cycle you are basically interrupting your “gears”. You have experienced this multiple times before. It’s when you suddenly wake up and you feel very tired, or shocked, and you just want to sleep again.
Got More Hours?
With the exception of cutting down on caffeine, I’m doing everything listed above. I exercise four days a week for at least two hours each, but not before I sit still in the middle of my room and just let my thoughts run free. I found out that my golden hour, as mentioned above, is between 5am to 8am, so I try very hard to finish every important things I need to within that time frame — which, of course, includes serious planning beforehand. Which tasks need to be prioritized and which ones can be cast away in the deep corners of my mind.