How much sleep is enough?


I deserve a gold star. Last night I got ready for bed by 10 and was in bed at 10.40.

Don’t know if it was because I was dog tired, or because of not falling asleep on the lounge first, but I fell asleep instantly and slept soundly until 4.30. 6 hours sleep seems to be my limit. I woke up,wide awake. I knew I wouldn’t fall asleep again. I could get up, do some jobs and have breakfast. I could sleep for an hour or two after that. Unfortunately I have to work, so that can’t happen.

There’s plenty on the ‘Net about famous people having little sleep. Apparently Winston Churchill only needed 5 hours at night. But, here’s the big but. He had a nap in the afternoon of 1 to 1 1/2 hours. That sounds like heaven to me. I love a good siesta. I wish I could routinely do likewise and do so on the weekends. Unfortunately our working style is not set up for this. Getting home at 6pm is too late for a nap.

There are other famous people who claim to have slept little at night. Margaret Thatcher for one. But who wants to be compared to her? Anyway, I read one site where it says she claimed this occurred when she was PM. Well, that would be an unusually demanding job. Doesn’t mean it was sustained all her life. And one commentator claims to have seen her sleeping during the day. And who wouldn’t have a little shut eye if you had to listen to speeches by party faithful? And what if her short sleep was sustained? She has dementia now. Wonder if sleep deprivation had an impact?

You can google to find lists of past and current famous/successful people who live on 4 to 6 hours of sleep. I can’t believe the ones who say they exist on 3 hours a night!

I don’t want to turn into one of those old people who talk endlessly about their lack of sleep, and that they can’t sleep, after having a good 6 hours. If that’s all I need, so be it. At different sages of your life you need different amounts of sleep. I think I am hitting the stage where I need less. But how could I tell when I don’t give my body a chance. (More on this tomorrow. I know you can’t wait!)

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