Sunday, January 4, 2009

Why Sleeping Late Is Good For You

While browsing the net the other day for blogging fodder, I found an article that gave three reasons why sleeping late may be beneficial

1. Eight hours of sleep might not be enough

Research by Henry Ford Hospital Sleep Disorders Center found that people who slept eight hours and then claimed they were "well rested" actually performed better and were more alert if they slept another two hours. Until the invention of the light bulb, the average person slept 10 hours a night.

2. Night owls are more creative

Artists, writers, and coders typically fire on all cylinders by crashing near dawn and awakening at the crack of noon. In one study, "evening people" almost universally aced a standardized creativity test. Their early-bird brethren struggled for passing scores.

I know this is true for me, as I tend to do my best writing late at night.

3. Rising early is stressful

The stress hormone cortisol peaks in your blood around 7 am. So if you get up then, you may experience tension.

This is also rings true to me. When I was in school and when I've worked first shift jobs, I never could get used to rising early, no matter how early I'd gone to bed the night before. I'd always "drag anchor" until noon each day, feeling vaguely sick to my stomach until that time.

2 comments:

dilettante said...

Some mornings, I get up and think "Pizza delivery wasn't that bad". But it was. Other mornings, I contemplate filing for disability. I got out of law school and then spent two years working data entry - because I could continue working nights. Now anything decent and reliable in that line has gone to India, and I work days. This is wrecking my health, physically and mentally.

Roger Bell said...

Another thought on this. I have always felt guilty about sleeping late. Before I got laid off, only two co-workers and my boss typically arrived at work later than me. This is with me getting up at 7:30 AM and being at work about 9 AM. That was late in my line of work.

I had some co-workers who would arrive at work at 6:30 or 7 AM. Of course, they always wanted you to know that fact, as if why am I so lazy.

In my first career, I had to be at work by 7 or 7:30 AM. Even then I was a night owl. Then I got home early enough in the afternoon for a power nap to get me through until bedtime.