Sounds drastic, right? I’ve decided that I’m going to take a break from polyphasic sleep – probably 3-4 weeks. As of today I’ve been doing it for about 4.5 months, and I feel like I have a good feel for what it’s like.
The truth is that napping during the day isn’t hard to do, but it is definitely disruptive – especially to other people. For example, last week a friend from San Francisco was in town for South by Southwest. I was hanging out with him and his friends, when all of a sudden it was nap time. They basically had to sit around and wait for me to take my nap, or lose my company. If I was deriving great benefit from the schedule, it would be worth such social impositions, but I’m not really getting that much from it.
I don’t really need the extra time right now. I thought I would make good use of it, but I honestly don’t. If I was super busy, then I would be more motivated to stay on polyphasic sleep. Also, no one else is doing it with me anymore, so my options for what to do during the night are fairly limited. Because I don’t really need the sleep, and usually don’t have too much to do at night, I end up slightly oversleeping. This means that I probably sleep 4-4.5 hours per day on average.
I’m also curious to see how much sleep I really need. My suspicion is that thanks to Raw Food, I only need 4.5-6 hours anyway. A schedule of 5am-10am or so would probably serve me just as well, and remove an incompatibilities between polyphasic and real life. Determining how much sleep I naturally need now is probably the biggest motivator to taking a break.
The biggest hesitation for taking a break from polyphasic sleep is derived from having done it for so long. I don’t like breaking the streak, and I feel like people may read this and decide not to try it for themselves. However, I think that with the knowledge I’ve gained through these past months, I could easily get reacclimated to the schedule if I decide I want it back.
I also intend to continue napping during the day when it’s convenient. I’m hoping for about 4 hours at night plus one or two 30 minute naps during the day. I actually really enjoy every nap, I just don’t like the restrictions they impose.
All that said, I will really miss my naps. Most of them involve very deep sleep and an interesting dream, which is more than I can claim for my monophasic sleep.
Brace yourself for updates!