So are you able, as Shakespeare would say, to sleep-perchance to dream? You may already suspect that this post isn’t about food. But it is related to history and is on a topic of personal importance. Sleep.
Recently I’ve been going to bed earlier which is changing my sleep pattern. I’m sleeping for about four hours and then waking for an hour or two before going back to sleep. During the time I’m awake I often make myself a hot drink, occasionally I watch TV.
I was concerned about this as it goes against everything you normally hear. I certainly aren’t getting 8 hours continuous sleep and, in fact, can’t remember when I ever have since reaching adulthood. It turns out my pattern is perfectly normal.
According to an article from the BBC news magazine (22 February 2012) titled ‘The myth of the eight-hour sleep‘ our ancestors had two periods of sleep of about four hours each separated by one or two hours of wakefulness. References to first and second sleep in literature started to disappear about the late 1600s and had entirely gone from our social consciousness by the 1920s. It looks like the reasons are better lighting and more evening activities.
Just knowing this makes me feel so much better and, I think, will help me sleep better. I hope it helps you too.
Sweet dreams everyone.