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Polyphasic sleep anybody?

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MightyBeast

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I am trying to change my sleep schedule from monophasic sleep schedule (you sleep one time for long hours) to a polyphasic sleep(you sleep in chunks and one deep core).

I have been successful for some days,
My sleep schedule was:
Nap 1: 1:30 p.m. to 1:50 p.m. (20 minutes)
Nap 2: 5:00 p.m. to 5:20 p.m. (20 minutes)
Core sleep: 10 p.m. to 1:00 a.m. (3 hours)
Nap 3: 5:40 a.m. to 6:00 a.m. (20 minutes)

For me it is easier to wake up at 1 a.m. and wake up and work till 5:40 a.m. but later my nap becomes bigger and i can not wake up.
My diet (living in a hostel) is not much good though, which could be interfering with it.
Do you have any experience with polyphasic sleep? How did you maintain it?
 
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lowtek

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I looked into it for a while.

My understanding, from reading first hand reports on reddit, is that it's generally unsustainable, as you have to drop whatever it is you are doing and take your nap / core sleep. It's very rigid, and doesn't seem conducive to the entrepreneur lifestyle.
 

MTEE1985

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I looked into it for a while.

My understanding, from reading first hand reports on reddit, is that it's generally unsustainable, as you have to drop whatever it is you are doing and take your nap / core sleep. It's very rigid, and doesn't seem conducive to the entrepreneur lifestyle.

Tim Ferriss writes about it in 4 hour body as well and found the same thing. I was fascinated by the idea of being rested in 3-4 hours every 24 but as Lowtek said and read, Ferriss found that people who missed their window by even a little bit had some nasty side effects.

Plus having young kids makes it a double no for me. I’d be interested to hear more about it though @MightyBeast if you continue it.
 

MightyBeast

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The major atttaction for me is, that at night there is silence, and also i felt more productive as i would not watch youtube or waste time if i woke up at 1 a.m. and get things done. Plus the extra hours. But it takes strict discipline.
 
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B. Cole

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:rofl:

Why? Some of ya’ll do some weird stuff to yourselves trying to find productivity. Complicated 20 minute nap sessions, pomodoro work schedule stuff with a kitchen timer.

Maybe I’m a little closed minded. I just aim to get shit done. Tons of it. As much as possible really. And act normal while doing it.

Going to bed now. :zzz:
 

MightyBeast

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:rofl:

Why? Some of ya’ll do some weird stuff to yourselves trying to find productivity. Complicated 20 minute nap sessions, pomodoro work schedule stuff with a kitchen timer.

Maybe I’m a little closed minded. I just aim to get shit done. Tons of it. As much as possible really. And act normal while doing it.

Going to bed now. :zzz:

The main thing is sir that from 9 to 5 i am studying in a university. And this schedule give me extra 3 hours or 4 in some days. I try to get things done as soon as possible too. Thanks for advice. :smile2:
 

Roli

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I am trying to change my sleep schedule from monophasic sleep schedule (you sleep one time for long hours) to a polyphasic sleep(you sleep in chunks and one deep core).

I have been successful for some days,
My sleep schedule was:
Nap 1: 1:30 p.m. to 1:50 p.m. (20 minutes)
Nap 2: 5:00 p.m. to 5:20 p.m. (20 minutes)
Core sleep: 10 p.m. to 1:00 a.m. (3 hours)
Nap 3: 5:40 a.m. to 6:00 a.m. (20 minutes)

For me it is easier to wake up at 1 a.m. and wake up and work till 5:40 a.m. but later my nap becomes bigger and i can not wake up.
My diet (living in a hostel) is not much good though, which could be interfering with it.
Do you have any experience with polyphasic sleep? How did you maintain it?

A lawyer friend used to do this, however he lived in Spain whereby the entire culture is geared to take a three hour nap in the middle of the day. Plus I think he took quite a lot of coke...

Instinctively it doesn't sound like a good idea, among other things, cell repair is happening while you sleep. The human genome has developed a mono phase type sleep pattern, just as dogs have developed a poly-phase pattern, you're not a dog. You are better off just going to bed earlier and waking up earlier.
 
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rogue synthetic

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You might get something out of it for short sprints of work. If you needed to. (I have no idea why you'd need to.)

Even the military couldn't get it to work for longer than a couple of weeks before sleep deprivation won out. It's not a lifestyle choice, if that's what you were asking.
 

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Nope. Around 12 pm, I take a 2 hour nap, like Winston Churchill. It follows my window of one meal a day routine.
 

srodrigo

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I am trying to change my sleep schedule from monophasic sleep schedule (you sleep one time for long hours) to a polyphasic sleep(you sleep in chunks and one deep core).

Is there any scientific evidence of this being good? I'm not an expert at this topic, but as far as I know, sleeping less than 7-8 hours a day will turn into serious health issues over time. Also, REM phases are there for a reason.

Why? Some of ya’ll do some weird stuff to yourselves trying to find productivity. Complicated 20 minute nap sessions, pomodoro work schedule stuff with a kitchen timer.

Maybe I’m a little closed minded. I just aim to get shit done. Tons of it. As much as possible really. And act normal while doing it.

Things like the Pomodoro technique actually have evidence of improving productivity. Our brain can't focus for longer than an hour, so if you sit there for 2-4 hours and get stuff done without taking breaks, you are probably not working at your peak. Brains need to switch between focused and diffuse mode in order to learn and perform efficiently.

A lawyer friend used to do this, however he lived in Spain whereby the entire culture is geared to take a three hour nap in the middle of the day. Plus I think he took quite a lot of coke...

That's one of the false cliches some people have about Spain. I'm Spanish, live in Spain, and know very few people who take a nap after lunch, and no one who takes a "three hour nap" (apart from the fact that naps longer than 30 minutes are unhealthy). I personally hate naps and never take one unless I had a terrible night's sleep and fall half-sleep while reading on bed in the afternoon (which doesn't happen often given I work 6-7 days a week). Not to mention if you have a day job, there is no way you would take a nap anywhere at their workplace. There are probably some people who have the habit of taking naps at the weekends, or maybe some retired people do daily, but the far from the entire population.
 

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There was an interesting series on The BBC recently that took identical twins and subjected them to polar opposite tests to see what the outcomes were.

The premise being that identical twins would provide the closest common ground available to reduce human variance as much as possible.

One experiment was to see if Power Napping or Sleep Banking was best for focus and memory etc.

To do this they needed to sleep deprive 2 sets of twins for 30 hours. They split the twins up into pairs (one on each team) The sleep banking pair had an extra 1 hour sleep per night for 4 nights leading up to the sleep deprivation cycle.

Immediately prior to sleep deprivation they put them through several cognitive tests including a 747 aircraft simulator where they were to land the plane. This created a range of benchmarks of their risk management, coordination, memory, reaction times and nerve etc..

Then they deprived them of sleep, except with the second team of twins who had not banked any sleep they gave them 12 x 20 min power naps during the 30 hour sleep deprivation phase.

They tested them throughout the 30 hour period and again at the end where they also put them back in the simulator.

Now I thought this would be an easy win for the Power Nappers (and so did they).

Turns out not to be the case. In every single test the Sleep Bankers performed significantly better than the Power Nappers. So the conclusion is if you want to perform at your best just get an early night.

I don't know if anyone will be able to view this outside the UK but I'll put up the link anyway:

BBC iPlayer - The Twinstitute - Series 1: 2. Sleep Deprivation

2019-03-06_07-02-55.png 2019-03-06_07-03-56.png
 
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srodrigo

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Also, more related to productivity than to sleep, I read a great blog post about the relationship of productivity and the human body's rhythms. Basically, you've got 2 hour intervals with productive and unproductive time frames. That's why just sitting and getting stuff done is quite inefficient. Also, planning different tasks to be done during your most productive hours (which varies between different people) can squeeze productivity even more.

How To Find Your Most Productive Hours

Anyway, no matter how much you cut on sleep or use your most productive hours, there is only that much you could fit in a day. The best productivity tool I've found is to do the most important stuff first. You get high productivity "magically" by removing, postponing or delegating non-important, non-urgent stuff.
 

Roli

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That's one of the false cliches some people have about Spain.

I was giving you a direct anecdote, albeit of someone who did this 20 years ago...

Another friend lives in Madrid and has done for the past 21 years, her kid's school have a 3 hour lunch period! This is fact, not a guess, not cliche, just simple fact...

I have been travelling to Spain and the islands for almost 30 years now, and I've definitely seen a decline in the 'siesta culture', however it does still exist.
 

srodrigo

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I was giving you a direct anecdote, albeit of someone who did this 20 years ago...

Another friend lives in Madrid and has done for the past 21 years, her kid's school have a 3 hour lunch period! This is fact, not a guess, not cliche, just simple fact...

I have been travelling to Spain and the islands for almost 30 years now, and I've definitely seen a decline in the 'siesta culture', however it does still exist.

There are definitely people who do that, as you say. I just don't thing "the entire culture is geared to take a three hour nap in the middle of the day" is real. Almost no one I know go home for lunch when working, so no possible nap for most employees. On the contrary, my dad used to do lunch+quick nap when he worked, but it's pretty uncommon.

Some schools unfortunately still have a 2 hour lunch break (mine did) but that's got nothing to do with naps, but to keep kids at school for as long as possible, as most people don't finish work early to pick them up (that's the reason they told me when we complained about that nonsense and waste of time). Some other schools don't care and don't do any lunch break but finish early (I had that during high school). So it varies, but nothing related to naps during week days.

What's true is that the entire culture is geared to make the day way too long. People taking 1-2 hours for lunch at work. Dinner at 10-11 pm, so next morning you see a legion of zombies. TV shows/films start around that time too. And work is even worse, with bosses who only care about people keeping their butts for as long as possible (6-7 pm at least), even if they are doing nothing; just because, you know, the longer you pretend to work, the more productive you are to your boss. But that's a different problem :)

Anyway, let's don't hijack the OP's thread with exotic cultures :) In case naps were a common thing for employees, I'd say they would drop productivity as hell, as you'd have to go home, nap, back to work, finish late and feel miserable. I know a few companies (Google?) have rooms for sleeping but it's rare, so maybe some people can tell whether they feel naps (EDIT: naps that don't involve extra commute) improve their productivity.
 
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MightyBeast

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Interesting, thanks for bumping this up. Siesta is definitely a thing in my town, (note: town, not downtown) retail places close from 12:00 to like 4:30, street is empty. But the only ones with that luxury are people not working in 8-6 and stuff.
Man I took that for granted, I should have opened a little brick and mortar of anything lol
 
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MaxKhalus

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Short Answer: Don't Do It.
Long Answer: Ok...
I've been obsessed with polyphasic sleep for years. I always wanted to sleep only 3h + 1h divided in naps. Imagine having 20h a day. I tried a few times.

Possible? Sure. Pleasant? You know the answer. Energy draining.
Polyphasic only makes sense if you are a productivity god already. Let me explain...
Do you absolutely crush your days?
Do you have the best health/energy habits installed?
Do you have enough work to do?

By far, the most crucial question is: are you being essential? You know... working to get results, not just be busy. Because when you sleep less, you become delusional, distract with things, and spend time "on work" with close-to-zero productivity.

If you are a productivity master, polyphasic is for you. Sadly, it's not for me yet. But I will do it 100% when I set for myself the right environment.
 

MaxKhalus

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:rofl:

Why? Some of ya’ll do some weird stuff to yourselves trying to find productivity. Complicated 20 minute nap sessions, pomodoro work schedule stuff with a kitchen timer.

Maybe I’m a little closed minded. I just aim to get shit done. Tons of it. As much as possible really. And act normal while doing it.

Going to bed now. :zzz:
Yeah...
No need to put 20h of hustle every day. Just put 1-3h consistently. It's enough to make massive progress. More hours also make work less fun.
 

Saavedra

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Is there any scientific evidence of this being good? I'm not an expert at this topic, but as far as I know, sleeping less than 7-8 hours a day will turn into serious health issues over time. Also, REM phases are there for a reason.



Things like the Pomodoro technique actually have evidence of improving productivity. Our brain can't focus for longer than an hour, so if you sit there for 2-4 hours and get stuff done without taking breaks, you are probably not working at your peak. Brains need to switch between focused and diffuse mode in order to learn and perform efficiently.



That's one of the false cliches some people have about Spain. I'm Spanish, live in Spain, and know very few people who take a nap after lunch, and no one who takes a "three hour nap" (apart from the fact that naps longer than 30 minutes are unhealthy). I personally hate naps and never take one unless I had a terrible night's sleep and fall half-sleep while reading on bed in the afternoon (which doesn't happen often given I work 6-7 days a week). Not to mention if you have a day job, there is no way you would take a nap anywhere at their workplace. There are probably some people who have the habit of taking naps at the weekends, or maybe some retired people do daily, but the far from the entire population.


People do sleep siesta in Spain though. My Family did, one hour long every Sunday after eating lunch outside. In the summer it is very nice to sleep after lunch, it is too hot to do anything in general anyway. That is why bars are full of people, including kids, until 23 or even later. I still sleep siesta,20 min usually, after lunch when it is a heavy lunch. It feels right and is nice, not as obligation.
 
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Benedict

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The major atttaction for me is, that at night there is silence, and also i felt more productive as i would not watch youtube or waste time if i woke up at 1 a.m. and get things done. Plus the extra hours. But it takes strict discipline.


Don't use it if you want to avoid wasting time. If you can't discipline yourself getting off YouTube when you want to work than trying to discipline yourself sleeping in the pattern you suggest won't work either.

Don't rely on the sleep rhythm to get shit done. Build systems that make discipline easier to start with and then slightly improve on your discipline. This way you can sleep the way you want and your body needs and built the most important skill: discipline.
 
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