Do you ever manage to get a decent eight hours of sleep but still wake up feeling groggy or tired? Well, the key to a good night’s kip might not be how much you sleep but rather when you fall asleep and when you wake up!
If we are able to get back on track, the benefits could be enormous - like losing weight, improving mood, getting a better night’s sleep and being more creative
That’s according to sleep specialist Michael Breus, also known as ‘The Sleep Doctor.’ Dr Breus has over 15 years of experience examining people’s nocturnal habits and doling out sleeping tips. Now in his new book, The Power of When, he argues that because of modern technology, the natural rhythm of our biology is out of sync. But if we are able to get back on track, the benefits could be enormous - like losing weight, improving mood, getting a better night’s sleep and being more creative. Sounds good to us!
So how can we re-align our bodies back to their natural rhythm? The first step is to work out our chronotype, says Breus. Confused? Read on.
Breus’ book, The Power of When, breaks down 75 different activities (like drinking coffee, exercising and sleeping) and tells you the best time of do each of them, depending on your biological clock or chronotype.
He has identified four different chronotypes - dolphin, lion, bear and wolf. According to Breus, we all fall into one of these types, depending on our sleep needs and personality. In a Daily Mail article, Breus describes these different types and how to best go about your day depending on your biological clock.
Generally, people who fall into the dolphins category are light sleepers and have naturally fast metabolism. Personality wise, they are perfectionists and detail-oriented. Breus recommends that dolphins wake up early, around 6:30am and go to bed as close to 11:30pm as possible. Exercising should be done around 7:30am and drinking coffee between 8:30am and 11am.
Lions tend to get up very early, which makes them tired in the evenings. They are optimistic and practical, and value exercise. Lions should wake up between 5:30am and 6am and go to bed as close to 10pm as possible.Exercising should be done around 5:30pm and drinking coffee between 8am and 10am.
Most people fall into the bear category, who typically hit the snooze button a few times before getting up and often sleep deeply but not as long as they’d like. They are friendly, avoid conflict and open-minded. Bears should wake up around 7am and go to bed as close to 11pm as possible. Exercising should be done around 7:30am or 12pm and drinking coffee between 9:30am and 11:30am.
Those in the wolf category find waking up before noon difficult and typically don’t feel tired until midnight or later. Personality wise, they are impulsive, creative and risk-takers. Wolves should wake up around 7:30am and go to bed as close to midnight as possible. Exercising should be done around 6pm and drinking coffee between 12pm and 2pm.
Fascinating! And according to Breus, figuring out our chronotype can also help us decide the best times to shop, learn something new, eat, and so much more. Which category do you fall into? To find out more sleeping tips and about your biological clock, check out The Power of When by Dr. Michael Breus (Ebury Publishing, £12.99).
Find more sleeping tips here and don't forget that the right matress and pillow is key to getting a good night's slumber - head over to George Home to help make your bedtime as comfortable as possible.