Sleep goes beyond basic rest to healing and learning enhancement. With a proper amount and quality, the brain undergoes detoxification, releasing chemicals that purify the body and simultaneously helps process learning throughout the nervous system.
All of those electrical signals stimulated from learning concepts or working in some physical activity throughout the day are reinforced during this experience. I used sleep and naps to accelerate my physical training and dexterity for Taekwondo back in high school. I took one summer to focus intensely on training and applied this science.
Rigorously trained, then slept+healed+processed+strengthened.
High intensity, short training bursts where I would reach exhaustion, then would allow my body-mind to integrate during short naps. Sometimes, I would train the day after just as intense and with others I’d spread out the days. What I noticed was spreading out the days enabled me to enhance physical abilities faster.
There was benefit in both the regeneration process (sleep) and giving some time before returning to training. Because I love training, this wasn’t always desirable, but I understood intuitively that rest and sleep allowed the body-mind system to recalibrate with enhancements.
If you notice in science “fiction,” when people are prepped to live over long time periods through some space travel, they’re placed in cryogenic “sleep” for a reason. Sleep (and the pineal gland) supports longevity.
Having consistent, quality sleep ought to be a productivity hallmark, yet striving for excessive sleepless hours tends to be an admirable trait today.
I encourage the hard work gunners out there skipping out on sleep as an honor badge to reverse the assumption that less sleep = more success. No amount of Pharma-made tech nootropics or bulletproof coffee can sustain a brain with accumulated toxicity over the long haul.
Some Sleep Options to Start:
- Prep the body for sleep instead of spontaneously falling out.
- Research essential oils, how their scents influence mental states and obtain a diffuser.
- Stretch. This loosens the muscles, increases bodily heat and blood flow. Can increase relaxation and peace of mind.
- Massage. If you’re not receiving it from someone else, apply self-massage. To the facial muscles, arms, legs, back, neck. Around the eyes. The attentiveness will increase relaxation, turn your focus inward and you’re able to create better flow through the lymphatic system.
- Turn off or dim lights, reduce stimulation.
- Perform a breath practice. Deep or paced (counting X number of inhalations, X number of exhalations) breathing will also induce relaxation and turn attention inward.
- Let your imagination replay the day’s experience.
- Gradually fall asleep.
If you research, you’ll notice that high performers across domains have some type of mindfulness, sleep or meditative technique that amplifies their work.
Here Kobe Bryant shares his experience after discovering both sleep & meditation.