When it comes to staying healthy, one of the most important tools that people have is sleep. The more restful sleep you can incorporate into your routine, the easier it will be to avoid and recover from illness.
Unfortunately, achieving the ideal sleep schedule isn’t always as simple as it appears. Traditionally, neuroscience and biological research have shown that humans require at least 7 hours of uninterrupted sleep per night to stay fit and healthy. However, there may be more than one way to get the rest you require.
The Everyman sleep cycle, a type of polyphasic sleep that focuses on dividing your day into multiple rest periods, has emerged as a possible way to boost productivity for today’s time-pressed entrepreneurs and those who lead a busy lifestyle. Today, we’ll look at the various types of sleep schedules that people can use to improve their health, productivity, and performance.
The Fundamentals of Sleeping Patterns
The first thing we need to look at before diving into the various types of sleeping strategies we can incorporate into our lifestyles is the different types of sleep patterns that people have.
Humans have a natural biological clock known as a circadian rhythm. This rhythm helps to determine how much sleep you need in a 24-hour period. The monophasic sleep pattern is one of the most common sleep cycles that most people follow. Monophasic sleep is commonly referred to as “normal” slumber.
Monophasic sleep consists of one long period of rest per day, usually during the night. You’ll create a schedule that works for your daily routine, usually avoiding naps and other periods of sleep throughout the day.
Other types of sleeping cycles, such as biphasic sleep, are also available. People in biphasic sleep sleep for a long period of time at night, usually up to 6 hours. They also sleep for fewer hours during the day, such as 20-minute naps in the middle of the day. Siesta periods, on the other hand, can last much longer – up to 90 minutes.
A 90-minute nap allows you to go through the entire sleep cycle, which can leave you feeling more rested and refreshed. Some people believe that biphasic sleep is healthier than monophasic sleep and more natural – as it is likely to be what we did before we began living in cities.
In contrast, segmented sleep is a type of biphasic sleep pattern in which you have two sleep periods at night. With this strategy, you’ll sleep for 6 to 8 hours per night, but you’ll sleep in two shifts, with a period of waking in between.
The Power of Naps and Polyphasic Sleep
For some, a completely different type of sleeping solution that focuses on taking more naps throughout the day is available. Napping, polyphasic sleepers believe, can improve learning ability, alertness, mood, and memory.
Experts believe that before the world became industrialised, humans had different sleep phases throughout the day. Throughout the night, people would typically sleep in two segments. This did not imply that everyone suffered from insomnia; it simply meant that humans did not sleep for as long as they do now in a single uninterrupted session.
This brings us to the world of nap-based polyphasic sleeping, in which people can rest four to six times per day. With a polyphasic cycle, there are numerous ways to fall asleep. The Everyman sleep schedule, for example, focuses on providing a long sleep time of 3 hours, with three 20-minute naps spread throughout the day.
The Uberman cycle is another example of a polyphasic cycle, in which people get only 3 hours of sleep per day in the form of 30-minute naps every 6 hours. There’s also the Dymaxion cycle, in which you only get 2 hours of sleep every 24 hours in the form of 30-minute naps every 6 hours, or four times per day.
To those who despise the idea of getting fewer hours of sleep each night, these various sleeping cycles may appear to be sleep deprivation. However, no two people have the same sleeping habits. While one person may require 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep to function optimally, another may only require 5 hours with a short nap during the day.
Understanding the Sleep Cycle of the Average Person
Everyman is a popular sleep cycle for people who use the polyphasic strategy. Most people will choose this option if they are having difficulty adapting to the nap-based Uberman cycle. It’s difficult to adjust from a long period of sleep each night to only 6 short naps per day.
When the Uberman cycle first appeared, it was said that it took people about a week to adjust to the new schedule. The difficulty of the schedule, on the other hand, frequently resulted in people feeling terrible. Even with multiple nap times, they couldn’t get their bodies to adjust to this new strategy and frequently struggled with sleep deprivation symptoms.
The Everyman cycle was created to improve on the Uberman approach and make it easier to implement. Rather than relying solely on a person’s ability to nap, this approach incorporates a longer core sleep within the cycle that lasts two or three hours. This makes adjusting to a new sleeping pattern much easier. You don’t have to rely on short naps of mostly light sleep to stay energised.
Some people may eventually decide to switch from the Everyman cycle to another strategy that requires more naps and less of a central sleep phase.
Everyman’s Sleep Variations
If you want to try out the Everyman slumber cycle for yourself, keep in mind that there are several ways to go about it. When experts first attempted to sleep according to the Uberman schedule, the result was usually a massive crash. Everyman emerged as the ideal solution in an attempt to optimise sleeping schedules. It was modified to include core slumber periods as well as naps throughout the day.
The Everyman strategy (all rights reserved) overcomes the Uberman strategy’s adaptation difficulty by providing people with the amount of core sleep that they still require. In the Everyman strategy, there are various types of sleep cycles to consider, including:
The Everyman 1 sleep option includes 6 hours and 20 minutes of sleep per day. The core sleep period lasts 6 hours, and you also get a 20-minute nap during the day after being active for 8 hours. This is a simpler strategy for most people to implement than other sleeping schedules, and it also facilitates the REM sleep cycle. Dreaming and an increase in vital signs characterise the REM stage of sleep. Most experts recommend taking your nap around lunchtime if you decide to try this version of the Everyman plan.
This is a variation on the original Everyman sleep cycle. The core sleep period lasts 4.5 hours in this option. You also get two 20-minute naps, giving you a total sleep time of 5 hours and 10 minutes. This strategy is generally effective for students who need to nap before and after class. It could also be a useful way to ensure adequate rest if you work part-time and only get a nap or a couple of short naps during the day.
This is one of the more difficult options for anyone looking to try a new way of resting. The Everyman 3 requires four hours of sleep in a 24-hour period, with one three-hour core sleep nap. There are also three additional REM sleep naps, each lasting twenty minutes. Everyman 3 is currently one of the most difficult schedules for many people to attempt, which is why many people will consider other options first. You can also try 3 hours of sleep followed by a 30-minute nap with this option to help you get used to it.
This option is the most complicated of all; it is also the most difficult to adapt to. This strategy consists of a single core sleep period lasting up to an hour and a half. You can also manage your energy levels by taking four 20-minute naps throughout the day. You still get less than three hours of sleep per night.
The Advantages of the Everyman Sleep Schedule
You may be wondering why you would even consider radically altering your sleep strategy with something like the Everyman routine. Even if you enjoy taking naps on occasion, the adaptation difficulty experienced while on the Everyman sleep schedule can leave you feeling exhausted at first.
Before you consider completely altering your sleep schedule in order to get more nap time, you should weigh the benefits and drawbacks. After all, there are advantages to this method, but there are also disadvantages to following this sleeping pattern.
For example, if you sleep less frequently at night and take frequent naps during the day, you should spend more time awake.
In theory, this should result in increased productivity and more time to complete tasks. Because you will be slightly deprived, you will be able to have longer periods of deep sleep when you do doze off. This means you won’t have to struggle to get your 4 hours of sleep because you’ll fall asleep right away.
This cycle allows you to devote more time to your hobbies and other interests. Furthermore, you can adjust your sleep and naps to accommodate different work schedules, which may be ideal for professionals who work shifts.
Adenosine levels can also be reset. Adenosine is the chemical in your body that is responsible for energy transfer. The natural painkiller produced by the body can aid in the widening of your blood vessels and the regulation of your heart rate.
Another thing to consider before taking your next nap is that this type of sleep strategy may increase your chances of lucid dreaming due to a lack of REM sleep and fragmentation in your naps.
Problems Caused by Polyphasic Sleeping
Although sleeping 4 hours and fitting a nap into your schedule every now and then may sound like a good way to boost your productivity, it is not the best strategy for everyone.
The body does not always adjust to only four hours of sleep every 24 hours. If you try to reduce your sleep hours to just three hours by taking a few naps, the adaptation difficulty increases.
When you first start experimenting with new sleeping styles, especially those that include a lot of naps, there’s a good chance you’ll experience some of the common symptoms of sleep deprivation.
You may notice changes in your appetite or sudden mood swings. You may even experience severe episodes of mania and depression.
Even with the occasional nap and light sleep to help you, there’s a good chance that your sleep issues will lead to changes in the way your body releases hormones, because napping doesn’t allow you to release as many hormones.
Growing children and young adults may face difficulties as a result of this. Sleep deprivation can also result in elevated ghrelin levels and decreased leptin levels, resulting in increased hunger.
Napping and Sleep Fragmentation
A nap-based sleeping pattern will be difficult for many people. To begin, there will be obvious side effects. For example, if you don’t get enough sleep every night as part of the Everyman strategy, you’ll be more susceptible to illnesses because your immune system won’t be working as well as it should.
Furthermore, if you’re attempting to adjust to the new schedule while still working, your sleep requirements may cause you to be a less productive worker. You may discover that sleep deprivation causes you to fall asleep in the middle of the day.
If your new sleeping schedule does not immediately make you feel refreshed and awake, you will most likely turn to coffee for that much-needed jolt, increasing your chances of becoming caffeine addicted.
It is also worth noting that you may find it increasingly difficult to manage your personal relationships, as you will often need to nap when other people are awake.
Furthermore, if your sleep fragmentation becomes too severe, you will be unable to make sound decisions when confronted with difficult situations. Sleep deprivation also makes it dangerous for you to drive.
Alternative Sleep Cycles: Do They Work?
If you intend to use a new sleeping pattern to change your life and increase your productivity, you’ll probably want to know for sure if it will work. Before you hire a professional sleep coach or give your email address to sleep websites, you should understand what you’re getting into.
The most important thing to remember is that everyone’s sleep needs differ. When it comes to the amount of sleep their bodies require to function optimally, everyone has different needs.
Someone whose job and lifestyle are based on rotating shifts may prefer the option to break up their day with a regular nap.
Those who must be awake bright and early each morning for a long day of tasks, on the other hand, will not be able to nap as frequently. For these people, one long core sleeping period may be the best way to get enough rest without needing to nap during the day.
There is no evidence that every human being requires the same amount and type of sleep every day in order to be healthy. Although we all know that we need sleep, some people may find that napping rather than getting all of their sleep in one go is a healthier option.
After all, studies continue to show that, when used correctly, naps can help improve productivity and focus. A nap is sometimes all you need to get through the day, even though your core sleeping period is critical for hormone release at night.
Should You Try a New Routine?
The Everyman sleep cycle was created to make it easier to learn about the Uberman cycle. If your daily schedule allows you to get your essential sleep at night while also taking a few daytime naps, you might want to consider this unusual schedule. It is important to note, however, that you will face complex challenges along the way.
Not everyone has the luxury of taking a nap during the day. Even if you make time for naps, you may not be able to discipline yourself to stick to a schedule you’ve set for yourself. Furthermore, naps do not always provide the extra boost you require when you are truly sleep-deprived.