Welcome to Step 8 of How to Live Forever in Ten Easy Steps:
8) Get More Sleep
The reason I want to raise this issue here is that your sleep patterns will dictate so many things in the rest of your life.
Your sleep patterns drive:
a) Your ability and desire to exercise,
b) How well, or how poorly, you metabolize your food,
c) The performance of your immune system and how your body can fight off disease, and
d) How you feel overall.
I’ll share with you one technique that has worked wonders for me over the past several years: I made myself into a consistent early riser. Although I go to bed at varying times, I get up at roughly the same time every morning. It doesn’t matter whether it’s during the week and I’m rushing off to catch an insufficiently air-conditioned bus into New York City, or whether it’s the weekend and I’m stumbling over to our French press to make some early morning coffee. Either way, I’ll be getting out of bed within an hour, give or take, of my normal 5:30AM wakeup time.
The effect for me is at the end of the day, no matter what day it is, I am usually sleepy and ready for bed at about 10:00-10:30PM. On any given day I can push this bedtime back a few hours if there’s something fun to do late at night, but I still force myself to get up at the same early time the next day. This has effectively grooved my sleep patterns into an easy, consistent habit and it has helped me get the 7 to 7 ½ hours of high quality sleep my body needs each night.
There are plenty of sources out there that address sleep issues with more depth and competence than I’ll be able to, since sleep issues are beyond the scope of this blog. But I’ll recommend one high quality post on how to become an early riser to get you started if you want to pursue the subject further.
Next: Step 9: Cut Back on Your Alcohol Intake