Sleep is a true privilege.. you can’t buy it.. you can’t snatch it.. Neither your social status, nor your hidden dollar stash, none of your cool gadgets, nor your costly cot… no my friend.. none of them can make you sleep well..
If you have not yet seriously observed your sleep patterns, then you better start doing it. Because the quantity and quality of your sleep directly impacts your health, your cognitive skills, reflexes and reactions, way of thinking, social behaviour and finally even the number of chess games you win. 🙂
You can read about REM (Rapid Eye Movement) and how sleep is categorized into light and deep phases, there are innumerable reports out there.. And you would need a health tracker device something like a ‘Jawbone UP band’ or a ‘Fibit flex’ or a ‘Nike+ FuelBand SE’ etc.. Trust me! Its worth money. Compare them and buy one that suits you… and there are some smartphone apps too that do a similar job.. check em out but how to improve your deep sleep? haha… thats the secret i am going to tell you now, but mind you! Its very tough to do all this:
Timely food and sleep
aah! you can’t do that? ok next..
I too swing too much, but for most of the week, I am on a balanced diet, with really a lot of vegetables, leaves and just a few carbs that are barely enough. Ensure you are served with more uncooked raw food. I found ‘1:3’ as the best ratio for cooked vs uncooked portions. And yes unfortunately, ‘NO SWEETS’ please…not at all. Start doing this in your lunch.. Ensure you dine very light so as not to stress your tummy too much..
Quantity of sleep
Yes, the number of hours matters. Observe it carefully, its the sleep time that we abuse most and usually cut it short for our unplanned events by sacrificing a few hours sleep on that day.. Its bad. There is no catching up later. It won’t work that way. I was sleeping 6 to 6.5 hours a day with 2 hr deep sleep, but one good samaritan has told me the ‘8-8-8’ rule.. 8 hours work, 8 hours of play and 8 hours of sleep… It would be fantastic if we can truly do that, but I am afraid I personally cannot.. So I pegged my sleep goal at 8 hours, but ensured sleeping at least 7dot5 hr a day…I planned the rest of the day in a way that gives importance to these most abused 8 hours of sleep time.. Few weeks like that and I can see the ‘deep sleep’ part actually increasing from 2 to 3 and then to 4.. and haa to 5.
I think we have outgrown the old adage of ‘What food to the hungry and what bed to the sleepy’.. No! Mere exercise won’t give you deep sleep, while it surely can make you sleep more. So, its mandatory you have a moderate to strenuous exercise routine but you still have to follow the rest of the rules in here..
Forgive and move on
This is another important thing you have to do.. Stop comparing yourself with others. Stop feeling insecure. Forgive them who did bad things to you. And move on. Forgive the bus driver who spoiled your day. Forgive the autowallah that almost pushed you into the gutter. Forgive the lady next door for all her stupidities. Life is bigger than the petty things you fight with every day. No one is eligible enough to give you a nightmare.
Divert the mind before you hit the bed
Keep your mind occupied all through the day. Don’t just watch TV or work for the office all day long but develop some habits that keep you happy and your mind occupied. And just before hitting the bed, divert your mind, like I play chess for 20 mins that helps in forgetting everything else before I go to sleep. Though I wake up suddenly when I defeat Grand Masters Anatoly or Anand in a dream, overall, it helps me go to bed with less nagging thoughts inside..
Dark room, Silence and Family
Make sure the bedroom is dimly lit or better if its completely dark with a handy switch or torch. And yes! you need a silent night to have a good sleep. And finally! If you have infant kids sleeping on the same cot, the device might detect their movements and your graphs would come down. But most of us are used to having a kid in the arm and I can sense the same freshness of deep sleep even though its not reported by the device. If the kid wakes you up, then its just a bad night. Otherwise, it seemed fine to me. Am still researching this part.
Its all guys! Thats how I keep clocking a 4-5 hour deep sleep every day.. 🙂 And my weight is coming down too from 96 to sub 90’s.. Thats my next milestone 🙂 Keep watching this space.
Hope this helps you…Thanks for reading,
I clocked a 78% deep sleep today (20130105) — its not a random shot — improving my deep sleep percentage from 40’s to almost 80’s 🙂 I can’t explain how supremely refreshing the feeling is 🙂
Jawbone doesn’t give in-depth analysis as below, neither it makes the input data available for off-app analytics… so I spend few seconds extra every day to keep my sleep data in an excel sheet and this is how it looks like over the last 3 months 🙂 .. hope this helps you or perhaps inspire too 🙂