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Polyphasic Sleep


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I’ve done this a lot particularly in the last 15 months since the pandemic started impacting heavily. The line of work I do makes it more tiring so I usually sleep for an hour or two when I get home in the evening (at random times) and then sleep again at 1-2am. 

Not sure if it brings anymore benefits than sleeping straight in the one period. I guess in theory as long as you’re getting enough overall sleep, then that’s the main thing. The only side-benefit with sleeping multiple times in a day, is that perhaps you get more different dreams? I seem to recall more dreams due to there being overall more number of sleep. Though this can be a mix of good, bad or largely unimportant.

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This is the first time I’ve heard of these words. I would imagine polyphasic sleep would probably be confusing for your body.

I have read that biphasic sleep (siestas / naptime) is actually good for you. 

One thing that I was interested in years ago was circadian rhythms and sleep cycles.

Basically, the idea behind circadian rhythm is that we fall asleep when it gets dark outside and we wake up when it’s light outside. However, in the past century this has been thrown out of balance, with electric lights keeping us awake later into the night. The whole idea is that you should not turn on indoor lights too excessively after sundown. They say if you allow your body to sleep and awaken according to the sunlight schedule you’ll feel more energetic and rejuvenated.

The way sleep cycles work is you take a notepad and pen and keep it next to your bed. You make the intention to sleep and write down the time... hopefully you have the ability to fall asleep pretty close to the time you wrote down.. Also, going to bed you have to keep on reminding yourself that as soon as you wake up, the first thing you have to do is write down the time..  

So when you wake up at night (yes most people do, if you aren’t aware of this, you just may have forgotten that you woke up!) immediately write down the time, then try to go back to sleep. If you write down the time every time you wake up, you should be able to determine the length of your sleep cycle. Typically it’s between 1.5 and 3 hours.

Now that you know the length of you sleep cycles, you should schedule your sleep so that you get a 2-3 complete sleep cycles per night. Wake up naturally after your last cycle and stay awake. You’ll feel rejuvenated. The worst thing you can do is get woke up by an alarm halfway through a sleep cycle.. you will feel tired for a long portion of the day if that happens.


Edited by phart010
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Well the reason I brought this up and started looking into it is because at the moment, my daily responsibilities are super low, and I don't really go out of the apartment much.

As a result, I ended up getting into a nasty little sleeping habit, i.e. I stay up later talking with my parents or brother (12 hour time zone difference), but then I'll usually just forego the use of an alarm clock the next day.

I noticed something very odd though, namely I've been feeling much more rested than ever before. I'll usually wake up sometime in the morning, feeling rested, then later mid afternoon take a nap for two or three hours, once again generally feeling quite rested afterwards. It's got to a point where basically I sleep when I feel tired, and do stuff when I'm not - this isn't pragmatic for the modern society, but it definitely feels a bit more natural.

Similarly, I used to drink a lot of caffeine, energy drinks, coffee, etc, but I haven't really had any caffeine for about a month, and this wasn't even a conscious decision, rather I just wasn't tired so I had no nagging need for a liquid pick-me-up.



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When I was in college I did a hybrid Uberman sleep schedule for a while. Basically slept from 12am to 3am and then 20min naps at 7am, 11am, 3pm, 7pm. It worked pretty well for the semester. It fell apart though when my schedule changed. Which is the biggest problem with these types of patterns. But after doing it I can now basically fall asleep within 5ish mins on command and take a 20min nap when needed

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