Tuesday, August 16

No Sleep Tonight

After a long and careful debate with myself, I have decided that my super power, if ever given the chance to have one, would be no need for sleep. I would not have to sleep. Ever.

Yes, time travel would be exciting, and control of the weather was high on the list. Invisibility, being able to fly, super-fast weeding capability - they were all under consideration. But having a full 24 hours to fill with anything and everything is just too good to pass up.

Think of all the things you could accomplish with those endless 24 hours. Not just housework, baby care, yard chores, and the like - but all those other projects that there never seem to be time for. Sewing, knitting, sitting down to read a book or pet the cat for pete's sake! It would be perfect.

Of course, spending time thinking about the wonderful effects of this power does waste valuable time that could be spent reading that book. But one must dream.

Or, technically, one must day-dream as there will be no sleeping!

As lovely as this sounds (I am picturing the massive amounts of yard chores done by lantern-light), it can never happen. Humans have a monophasic sleep pattern (your typical 8-hour block of sleep every 24 hours).

But I can get close. Here is how: The Uberman Sleep Cycle. It replaces 8 hours of shut-eye with six 20-minute naps. According to an article in Men's Health magazine, Leonardo da Vinci is said to have followed a sleep pattern akin to Uberman. Also 'geniuses and military leaders throughout history have been linked with polyphasic and unconventional sleeping habits—Napoleon, Thomas Edison, Nikola Tesla, and Winston Churchill, to name a few.' Who wouldn't want to be ranked up there with those guys? Even if it is for homesteading accomplishments and having a spotless kitchen.

Animals, new mothers and babies all have polyphasic sleep patterns, so why not regular adults? The possibilities could be endless.

I am a little unsure if I should try this however. Aside from absolutely annoying my husband (stop vacuuming at 4am!), I would get a little cranky. Usually on days when I push myself to stay up late and get things done, I can get up early the next morning if I have to, but I notice that my mood is drastically changed. Especially if this happens more than one or two nights in a row. And how would you get exactly six 20-minute naps? It takes time to fall asleep and who wants to have to hear an alarm clock 6 times instead of just once?

I am thinking something a little less drastic. According to medical sources the average person can get by, without drastic negative effects, with 6 hours of sleep in a 24 hour period. I can probably boost this to 5 hours by consuming massive amounts of caffeine.

I think this will give me more than enough time to complete all my back-logged knitting and sewing projects.

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