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I sleep for ~9 hours a night and I wake up at ~9.30 am. I am NORMAL. - How much sleep do you need?

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I sleep for ~9 hours a night and I wake up at ~9.30 am. I am NORMAL. I am not LAZY, I don't have ISSUES with my sleep. This is NOT something I need to fix. We NEED to fix our society's attitudes and expectations with sleep, and not feed into the sleep-deprived, society that feels guilty for getting the sleep they need.

I am sharing this post because we generally have damaging views on how much sleep we need. Most of us agree sleep is important but beyond that, we are educated by wrong attitudes to how much we should be sleeping and when. We look at outliers that are successful and attribute their success to living in extremes. No one mentions the famous prime ministers who developed dementia when they mention they only slept 4 hours a night ( A relationship has been identified with less sleep and dementia.).

The early bird catches the worm, early to bed early to rise makes a man wealthy, healthy, and wise. Where were these cultural sayings reinforced by farming and factory work that required us to be up at the crack of dawn?

Sleep timing recommendations are based on what time you actually sleep not what time you go to bed, many of us miscalculate our sleep time and overestimate it not taking to account the time it takes for us to fall asleep.

The 'average' amount of sleep you need ranges from 7 hrs to 9, but with few people needing as little as 6 or as much as 10. There is a genetic predisposition to this so there is little you can do to change it drastically.

The time you need to sleep is also has a genetic predisposition with an extreme early-type sleeping from 9 pm to 5 am and an extreme late-type preferring to sleep at 4 am to 11 am (they can almost share a bed and never be in it at the same time ). We are all different and not everyone fits into the 8hrs sleep in a 9 to 5 life.

I have just finished my chronobiology course by leading chronobiologist Till Roenneberg. Which has inspired me to share this. On top of reading his books and loads of other books on the subject of sleep, I find chronobiology and sleep extremely fascinating. I recommend Internal Time by Till Roenneberg for an easy read on this subject.

This is a picture of my chronobiology profile in comparison to the rest of the population. The MCTQ (Munich Chronotype Questionnaire) is based on Till's work and holds data of over 200000 people across the globe. Want to find out if you are an early or late type in your sleep timing?

What can you do with this information?

  • Figure out what your sleep need is and protect it.

  • If you manage a team embrace a flexible working culture that embraces night owls as well as the early birds

  • Question the views and attitudes that promote a sleep-deprived society

Get in touch with RestSpaceLDN if you would like to learn more about sleep related topics.


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