Sleep Doctor Discovered Four Types of People – Your Type’s Daily Schedule May Be the Key to Health, Happiness, and Success

 

The hectic life of the 21st century leaves most of us forgetting the essentials when it comes to health: we spend too many hours sitting down; we don’t drink enough water;  and as each new sleep study keeps reminding us, we do not get nearly enough sleep.

Research shows that a healthy adult needs about 8 hours of sleep each night, yet 35% of the American adult population is getting less than 7 hours.

“Human beings are the only species that deliberately deprive themselves of sleep for no apparent gain. Many people walk through their lives in an underslept state, not realizing it,” says sleep scientist Matthew Walker, the director of the Center for Human Sleep Science at the University of California, Berkeley.

Walker explains that being sleep deprived results in many health consequences: problems concentrating, a weakened immune system, and even a shorter life span.

“Every disease that is killing us in developed nations has causal and significant links to a lack of sleep,” he says.

The science is there, and it fully supports the conclusion that each of us needs about 8 hours of sleep to have healthy functioning bodies and minds.

However, there is another puzzle piece to a healthy full-night sleep. Another sleep scientist, Dr. Michael Breus, brings in the study of chronobiology into this conversation – the study of people’s internal clocks, their own unique biological rhythm.

Dr. Breus discovered four different chronotypes. The biggest type he calls bears, and roughly a half of the population falls under this category. The rest is split between categories called dolphins, lions, and wolves.

“Each Chronotype will reveal exactly what you need to do to work with your body, not against it,” promises Dr. Breus’s website.

 

Each category has its own daily routine that is the most ideal for this type. Following this daily schedule will result in a better, healthier and happier lifestyle. Dr. Breus outlines each type in full detail in his book “The Power of When.”

Knowing your type will help you make better decisions about when are your best hours of the day for creative work, when you should nap or go for a run, when to eat to more effectively nourish your body, when to focus on self care, and even when to have the best sex.

To find out your type, you don’t need the book, you can simply take a 45-second  diagnostic quiz at www.thepowerofwhenquiz.com.

Best Daily Routine for the Four Types of People

All of the four chronotypes should get about 7-8 hours a sleep each day, but it is what they do during the waking hours and when they have their most active hours that differs. It is important to note that no one will be able to follow this schedule perfectly, especially not every day, but it is a helpful guideline to use whenever possible.

The Dolphin Type

Dolphins tend to be light sleepers and are most likely to be insomniacs. Their best daily schedule would be the following:

6:30 a.m.: Wake up and exercise
7:30 a.m.: Eat breakfast
9:30 a.m.: Have (organic) coffee, or a healthier energy-boosting drink
10 a.m.-12 p.m.: Brainstorm and focus on creative projects
12 p.m.: Eat lunch
1-4 p.m.: Best time to get in a quick walk outside if needing more energy.
4-6 p.m.: Best time for intellectually demanding tasks. Send work emails.
6 p.m.: Meditate, do yoga, or use any other relaxation tool.
6:30-8 p.m.: Eat dinner
10:30-11:30 p.m.: Turn off all your electronics. Read a book, or take a bath.
11:30 p.m.: Go to sleep.

The Lion Type

Lions have the most energy early in the morning, which should be used to their advantage. It is best not to leave important tasks till evening, when lions are already exhausted. For this type, the recommended daily routine is:

5:30 a.m.: Wake up and eat breakfast.
6-7 a.m.: Plan your day, your projects, and think long-term. Big-picture thinking. Meditate for inspiration.
9-10 a.m.: Have coffee (or a healthier energy-boosting drink).
10 a.m.-12 p.m.: Hold meetings.
12 p.m.: Eat lunch.
1-5 p.m.: Brainstorm and journal.
5-6 p.m.: Exercise.
6-7 p.m.: Eat dinner.
10 p.m.: Turn off all your electronics.
10:30 p.m.: Go to sleep.

 

The Bear Type

Bears (half of the population) wake up and go to sleep with the natural cycle of the sun. It is especially crucial for this type to get full 8 hours of sleep each night. Their best schedule:

7 a.m.: Wake up and do light exercise.
7:30 a.m.: Eat breakfast.
9-10 a.m.: Plan your day.
10 a.m.: Have coffee (or a healthier energy-boosting drink).
10 a.m.-12 p.m.: Work on the most difficult tasks.
12 p.m.: Go for a walk. Eat lunch.
2:30-2:50 p.m.: Take a nap, or meditate.
3-6 p.m.: Make phone calls. Send out emails.
6-7 p.m.: Exercise.
7:30 p.m.: Eat dinner.
8-10 p.m.: Brainstorm.
10 p.m.: Turn off all your electronics.
11 p.m.: Go to sleep.

The Wolf Type

Wolves have the most energy in the evening, and the least in the morning. Out of all the types, they have the hardest time waking up in the morning.

7-7:30 a.m.: Wake up (using multiple alarms). Take notes of your thoughts
7:30 a.m.: Eat breakfast.
8:30 a.m.: Briefly exercise outdoors.
9 a.m.: Plan your day.
11 a.m.-1 p.m.: Have coffee (or a healthier energy-boosting drink). Do busywork.
1 p.m.: Eat lunch. Take a walk.
4-6 p.m.: Hold meetings. Share your ideas with co-workers.
6-7 p.m.: Exercise.
8 p.m.: Eat dinner.
11 p.m.: Turn off all your electronics. Meditate. Take a hot shower.
12 a.m.:  Go to sleep.

 

What To Do When You Cannot Fall Asleep

The daily routine schedule for the four types of people works fully when the person goes to sleep and wakes up at the recommended times. Unfortunately, many of us have trouble falling asleep at night.

This is partly due to our excessive usage of screens and bright lights, which trick the brain into thinking it is still day light, thus not producing enough melatonin – the hormone responsible for sleep – in time.

Besides taking a melatonin supplement, it also helps to wear Blue Light Blocking Computer Glasses in the evening, especially when working on a computer. While blue light is needed for staying awake, when the body needs to prepare for sleep, it does not need it. Blocking blue light coming from electronic devices by wearing these glasses is one great way to make sure you have enough melatonin for a restful night.

Some other tips for falling asleep faster:

  • Leave the bed for sleeping. Working in bed, or staying in it for a long time to watch TV can make the brain make an association between bed and being awake. If you can’t fall asleep for a long time, it’s better to go to another room for half an hour and read a book, then come back to bed to try to fall asleep again.
  • Try meditating before going to bed.
  • Stay away from sleeping pills. They contain chemicals which produce a sedated state in the body. They do not produce natural sleep or replicate any of its benefits.
  • Stay away from alcohol. Just like sleeping pills, it sedates the mind, but does not help with quality sleep. It also blocks REM sleep, which is crucial for mental health.
  • Do not drink caffeinated beverages in the evening. Even if you are able to fall asleep, the quality of this sleep will be greatly diminished without you realizing it.
  • More insight about human sleep patterns  can be found in “Why We Sleep” by Matthew Walker.

Recommended reading:

Benefits of Sleeping with a Weighted Blanket

You’ve Been Drinking Water WRONG Your Whole Life – Leading-Edge Scientist Explains (and How To Fix It)

13 Research Backed Reasons to Go Buy a Stand-up Desk As Soon as Humanly Possible

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