It seems 8 continuous hours of sleep is not natural, this according to a recent article in BBC News Magazine. I find this story very appealing for a number of reasons, so I wanted to share it with you.
For me, this is good to know, since I often find myself wide awake in the middle of the night being concerned about being awake. Over the years, I’ve learned to utilize the time writing, meditating or even exercising.
3am runs are exhilarating. I love the empty streets, the lack of traffic. And there is something delicious about climbing back into bed for an early morning snuggle.
This is what researchers call “segmented sleep”. The idea acknowledges that it’s natural for us to sleep four hours or so, wake for an hour or two, and sleep again for four hours or so.
According to researchers, segmented sleeping may be a bi-product of our evolutionary past, and that waking up at night is a normal part of human physiology. Some say it’s even necessary for our psychological well being.
There is some evidence that our lack of segmented sleeping is actually behind more than 30% of problems facing modern medicine - specifically with how we process stress.
For me, the early morning hours are the sweet spot for creativity, contemplation, and even sex. Between sleep cycle sex has a fascinating quality, because it is like making love in an altered state. In my experience, it can be restorative, meditative, and sublimely filling to my semi resting senses.
“A doctor's manual from 16th Century France even advised couples that the best time to conceive was not at the end of a long day's labour but "after the first sleep", when "they have more enjoyment" and ‘do it better’. “
So the next time you find yourself awake at night, grab your sweetie and play. That’s what our ancestors did. Not only will it be good for your body, but it could also be good for your mind.