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How Do You Sleep (Better)?

How does your sleep affect your work and demeanor? Share your nightly sleep hours and the difference quality sleep makes in your work performance and mood the following day.

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Top comments (14)

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kurealnum profile image
Oscar

I go for a run every night. Just a mile or two, but it helps tire me out after sitting behind a screen for 90% of the day.

Running just helps me get to sleep, and once I'm asleep, I'll be out the entire night. I get roughly 7-8 hours a night, which is pretty healthy for me.

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nombrekeff profile image
Keff

Ha. What a question. For me sleep is everything. For my brain to work nowadays I need at least 8-9 hours of good sleep. Not only that, but going to sleep at a decent time.

When I started coding I did not have very good sleeping habits, and most times it reflected in my work. It took me years to realize that. Once I did, the quality of my code improved. Not only that, but my motivation, energy and general feeling improved.

It's easy for beginners to stay up late and keep grinding, but that's a path to burnout, believe me, I've been there.

Sleep also affects the rest of your life, be it sport, socialising, apetite, etc... So I highly recommend giving it the attention it needs.

Imagine an electric drill that runs on batteries. You can charge it up to 40%, the drill will still work. But it will have less power and will last for a shorter amount of time. Well, we're like the drill and sleep is our charger. We still work but not at the efficiency we could.

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dan_hawkes_3aeb1f512fb01e profile image
Dan

"It's easy for beginners to stay up late and keep grinding, but that's a path to burnout, believe me, I've been there."

Nailed it. I'm on my 18th year of service this year and can 100% vouch for this. Just the other week I was chatting a new joiner and they said to me 'to get places I've been told to say yes to everything'. To me that's the worst advice you can give someone and you will burn.

To me, the most empowering thing you can do is know when to say no to things. Look after yourself, balance your priorities and know when to back away.

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sashkan profile image
Pierre Olivier TRAN

Sleeping is good. In fact, it is so good that it should be seen as any other important activity in your day: you have to take it seriously, and you have to be honest with yourself about it. Find out how many hours of sleep you need, and build your schedule around it. I'm lucky enough that I only need about 6.30 hours of sleep to feel good.

Here are a few golden rules I try to apply.

  • Keep your phone away from where you sleep
  • Your body is a beautiful machine. If you are tired, it will tell you so. Listen to it.
  • Do not eat too much before going to bed. Ideally, do not eat anything for 2 hours prior bedtime.
  • It is WAY easier to be productive by waking up earlier than by going to bed later at night.
  • Physical activity will help tremendously

Also, I suffer from severe anxiety disorder, and sometimes it keeps me up at night. When I was a student, all I had to do was to get wasted on alcohol, but no more. I started breathing exercices, it helped a bit, but then I discovered than focus-inducing games helped me a lot to clear out my mind. Games such as Candy Crush, Bloons TD, anything that will keep you highly focused for a short amount of time.

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alesten profile image
Cathrine • Edited

I can see a drastic difference not only in my productiveness and mood when I’m on a good sleeping schedule, and when I’m not. It also has a huge impact on my workout effectiveness, eating habits and ability to make longterm decisions.

I have a severe insomnia since childhood, so it’s been an real struggle for me.
I’ve tried every advise out there, from camomile tea to no-screen curfew, nighttime routine, blackout shades and meditation all put together .

But the real game-changers for me were external in the end.

  1. Becoming a high-level professional, so that I can claim totally flexible working hours as a part of my contract. With remote job it does wonders for my sleep.
  2. After three years of switching doctors, finally meeting a psychiatrist who was able to find the right meds for me.
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jjokah profile image
John Johnson Okah

"Sleep is Everything"

Whenever I hear these words, I lose my cool because it's so incomplete. TBH, the recommended 8 hours of sleep made my life a little worse than it was. Sleep is very important; it helps us recover. But it's in no way as important as the actual work that leads to your exhaustion.

Please note, I LOVE sleeping, but I don't have the luxury of indulging in it yet.
To answer the question, 'How Do You Sleep (Better)?":

I sleep better by exhausting myself with meaningful work during the day. Then at night, I have a well-deserved rest (for 5 hours).

Here's a piece from Arnold Schwarzenegger:

SLEEP FASTER

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dan_hawkes_3aeb1f512fb01e profile image
Dan

My partner and I decided to cut back on the amount of TV we watch each evening. With a 15 month old once he's gone to bed it became habit to sit down in front of the telly and do nothing other than doom scroll through Netflix trying to find things to watch. We're both very active people, we also have four dogs which I take out on 5-6 mile walks every day (on top of working 40+ hours in front of a screen).

The single biggest difference to mine (and by extension my partners) sleep is cutting back on TV in the nights, instead we sit at the kitchen table or in the living room and just talk. While away the hours just chatting about anything and everything. It's what we used to do and I'd (almost) forgot how much we both loved it. We're in the process of moving to a much nicer home with a far better setup so I can only dream of how much better it'll be.

We've also both taken a keen interest in Hygge (check it out). Building an atmosphere of warmth and cosiness. In short, enjoying the simple pleasures and just being in the moment. It all starts with turning off the screen (once work is finished!)

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giovannimazzuoccolo profile image
Giovanni Mazzuoccolo

Personally, not using devices with backlighting before bedtime has helped me quite a bit
If we really don't want to give up technology an e-reader can help.

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anikkdev profile image
Anik K Dev

In my life, i will do what i like till I fall asleep. After waking up... Doesn't matter when or how many hours later, grind a cup of coffee, drink that shxt... Then run again.
... Atleast that's what I follow 🙃

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christiancho profile image
Christian Cho

Answer: Take care of yourself.

Disordered sleeping can be a sign of other issues that might need addressing and nothing other than addressing the underlying issue can fix it. What's the point of avoiding blue light and exercising if you have sleep apnea and still can't feel rested? All of this advice on how to achieve better sleep assumes that you're already healthy enough to get the sleep you need.

Depression, PTSD, sleep apnea, anxiety, etc, can all contribute to an inability to get truly restful sleep. Be kind to yourselves, take care of yourselves, and get help if you need it.

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viniciusenari profile image
Vinicius Koji Enari

Going to the gym every day really helped with my mood and sleep schedule. I found it easier to sleep, not only because I feel more tired at the end of the day but also because I'm more relaxed, which makes falling asleep much more effortless. I believe that anxiety was the primary cause of my insomnia, and exercising has been immensely helpful in alleviating it.

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syxaxis profile image
George Johnson • Edited

Routine, routine, routine. Don't mess with it once you have a good one worked out. I tend to go to bed around 9pm, get up around 4am. Always go out for a 1hr walk as soon as I get up when it's still dark, time to get my brain warmed up, no music, just walking and thinking about this and that, good time to work out problems. My work day is around 7am to 4pm, I try for 1hr lunch but often miss it.

Watch the chemicals! I used to be on about 14 cups of dark roast coffee a day, I found I was sleeping really badly and getting pains in my bladder and kidneys!! Some nights I would get about 2 hours sleep I was so wired, then I'd crash every 3-4 days. So I completely cut coffee and switched to plain tea, no sugar or sweeteners, down to 7-8 cups a day max. I sleep like a log now.

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thatcomputerguy profile image
Griff Polk

I don’t sleep. :) JK. I know it’s expensive, but what I do is instead of reading an actual book I use a Kindle Paperwhite, because it has a warm light which instead of a lightbulb with blue light, is better because it doesn’t stimulate the brain. I also use an EightSleep 3 Pod and Mattress. Note: Referral Link and the (no referral link) Philips Hue smart lights. I will tell you more if you want it!

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matkwa profile image
Mat Kwa

In short: Exhausting physical training. I have had terrible sleeping habits for most of my life, especially during stressful periods I was suffering from Insomnia. I hated to wake up in the morning. Since I am training hard, I wake up fresh every morning without an alarm.