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How to sleep for 6 hours?

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Main Question or Discussion Point

Hello PFers,

My exams are approaching and I need to put in more studyhours. I can't getup without having a sound sleep of atleast 8 hours. I tried many things - kept the alarm far away so that I have to walk a few steps to turn it off, put the A.C. on a timer etc but failed.

I don't care if it affects my health, its just a matter of 2.5 months. To achieve something you have to lose something. Please suggest me some ways to do this.

Thanks in advance.
A.Q.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
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What exactly do you think you will achieve by doing this? Feeling like crap and not being able to learn as efficiently or as fast as you would have had you been well rested? Well, if that's your goal, you're asking the right question.
 
  • #3
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By doing that, I will achieve a good rank in my exam. 95% of the top rankers sleep for 6-7 hours a day.

If I get a sleep of 6 hours, I don't feel like crap, I can study efficiently - only if I get up.
Don't care about the aftereffects, just tell me how do I achieve it.
 
  • #4
By doing that, I will achieve a good rank in my exam.
You won't. Trust me on this. Getting a good night's sleep beats all-nighters any day. Screw the top rankers. If you can't get out of bed, then DONT GET OUT OF BED. Just use the time you have more wisely.

If you're dead set on it, then I don't know what to tell you. I can set my alarm right next to my bed and never fall back asleep.
 
  • #5
DaveC426913
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Don't care about the aftereffects
What makes you think they will be aftereffects as opposed to duringeffects?


The first week of sleep loss will compromise your ability to study in the second week. And it will accumulate.
 
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  • #6
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you do realize that sleep helps you organize what you've tried to learn in your mind? I'm revising for exams myself right now and I definitely notice that when I've found something hard to understand, then slept on it, it's been easier to tackle at the next attempt.
it's important to get enough sleep or you won't be able to concentrate either. I'm sure that 16 hours of potential work time per day for 2.5 months is not going to be that much different to 18 hours.
 
  • #7
DaveC426913
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jeebs is right. In the long-term (2.5 months) you would be much better to organize other parts of your life to get the extra time you need. Sleep is the one you should not compromise on.
 
  • #8
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hmmm....
Is a 7 hours sleep fine?
 
  • #9
DaveC426913
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hmmm....
Is a 7 hours sleep fine?
How much do you need?

How much do you need to feel rested and alert? It sounds like you need 8 hours.

What are you doing with the other 16?
 
  • #10
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Like others said, sleeping 6 hours instead of what you need 8 hours will only have a negative impact on your learning and mark.

Sleep is not to just rest your body and mind. During your sleep you are relearning everything during the day, but it skips over the non-important parts(like skipping the boring parts of a movie). So no matter how much you study and try to be productive, sleeping is MORE productive. (Over sleep is not productive though.)

Rather than trying to work like never before, you should study smarter than ever before. I'm sure every top student has a good studying habit, and I'm sure the program you want to get in wants you to have a good studying habit.

The hard part is to develop a good studying habit. Developing a good studying habit is a art, it takes a lot of effort, time, adaptation and self control. It is VERY hard.
 
  • #11
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hmmm....
Is a 7 hours sleep fine?
There is no hour for everyone, it depends on you. There are probably people who only needs 6 hours while some people needs close to 9. Though most people need 7-8 hours.
 
  • #12
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How much do you need?

How much do you need to feel rested and alert? It sounds like you need 8 hours.
erm I need 7-7.5 hours to feel rested. But if no one wakes me up I sleep for 8-9 hours (=laziness).

What are you doing with the other 16?
I have been studying for 7-9 hours a day for the past 4 months, not continuosly but with breaks throughout the day.Rest of the time for eating, praying, watching t.v. etc.
Now I need to increase it to around 12-14 hours of sincere studying. I am preparing for the world's most challenging/toughest Engineering Entrance Exam. I have seen students who sleep for 4-5 hours for the whole year and get a rank below 5000 (out of 4 Lakh)
 
  • #13
Choppy
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I'm not sure there's a good way to reduce the amount of sleep you need, although some things to try include:
- regular sleep schedule
- regular exercise
- limit caffeine intake - particularly in the hours leading up to bedtime
- write out everything you need to accomplish the next day so that you won't dwell on it while you're trying to sleep
- do what you can to limit distractions that might wake you
- avoid television before sleeping
- have a regular wind-down routine
- for getting up sometimes a nice shower can do the trick

Those tips will help you get better sleep, which is what you should focus on, rather than decreasing the amount of bad sleep.

Otherwise, the best advice is to figure out how to study more efficiently. That is something you CAN change and improve on and will give you measurable results. There's a lot of threads on that, so look around and good luck!
 
  • #14
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- for getting up sometimes a nice shower can do the trick
I wish there was a shower attached to my bed :biggrin:

Those tips will help you get better sleep, which is what you should focus on, rather than decreasing the amount of bad sleep.

Otherwise, the best advice is to figure out how to study more efficiently. That is something you CAN change and improve on and will give you measurable results. There's a lot of threads on that, so look around and good luck!
Nice post.
 
  • #16
Simfish
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http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/7920197/Seven-hours-sleep-is-the-recipe-for-health.html

Honestly, 6 hours of sleep is just as good as 8 hours of sleep.

==

As for sleeping less, well, trying to split up your sleep into two (or more) intervals might do the trick. More intervals reduces your sleep the most (it's called polyphasic sleep), but 2 intervals is a lot easier.

And if you're feeling unalert after waking up, modafinil or Ritalin would do the trick (I won't advocate adderall since it's neurotoxic). If you could ever get your hands on modafinil, that's probably the best solution (but it's also very very expensive)
 
  • #17
DaveC426913
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Last edited:
  • #18
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You study Physics, ie. a science, where they're supposed to teach you the scientific method, as well as how to interpret data and think logically, and this is your conclusion after reading that article?
Don't be silly. Everyone's different, and they need as much as they need. The 8 hours thing is just an average.

That article uses only a single criterion - heart disease - as an indicator. A goo done, but still just one.
Not to mention that there was no link to the original study, and confounding factors that might have come into play weren't even discussed (were they discussed in the study at all - well we don't know that either!).
 
  • #19
Simfish
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You study Physics, ie. a science, where they're supposed to teach you the scientific method, as well as how to interpret data and think logically, and this is your conclusion after reading that article?
They actually never really teach the scientific method for a Physics degree. :p The physics degree is really more about solving problems than about doing actual science.

That being said, the 7 hour figure *has* been replicated across multiple studies. Here's another one, *with* concrete data:

http://health.ucsd.edu/news/2002/02_08_Kripke.html [Broken]

In fact, it suggests that 6-7 hours is optimal.

Study is here:

http://www.bmj.com/content/324/7335/446.6.full
 
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  • #20
DaveC426913
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I'm still sayin' it's not applicable here. They're talking about long-term survivability, we're talking about quality of life. You can live long but still have a poor quality of life.

Here's a spurious example: restricted calorie diets seem to be associated with longer life, but they don't really talk about quality of life. What is one's energy level like on a severely calorie reduced diet?

You don't have to agree with it, I'm just pointing out that the study, while making a compelling point, is not directly applicable.
 
  • #21
Simfish
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I'm still sayin' it's not applicable here. They're talking about long-term survivability, we're talking about quality of life. You can live long but still have a poor quality of life.

Here's a spurious example: restricted calorie diets seem to be associated with longer life, but they don't really talk about quality of life. What is one's energy level like on a severely calorie reduced diet?

You don't have to agree with it, I'm just pointing out that the study, while making a compelling point, is not directly applicable.
Okay I see. In any case, quality of life is more subjective than most things, so there's no reason not to experiment (if it's healthy).

PS: the calorie restriction experiments (so far) actually do show improved quality of life. :p Rhesus monkeys on calorie restriction were *much* more energetic than their controls. That being said, as mentioned earlier, there's definitely interpersonal variation.
 
  • #22
mathwonk
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when i wanted to sleep less and study more, i stopped all drinking, and ate less, to require less time to digest the food. i also exercised by running, to be more fit. i also used a loud alarm.
 
  • #24
Fredrik
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Maybe you can ask this guy to build you a more effective alarm clock: (Skip the first 50 seconds).
 
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  • #25
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That article is about heart disease, we're talking about cognitive function.

Get as much sleep as your body tells you that you need. Everybody's sleep needs are different. Some people need 6 hours, some need 8. This also changes with age. Generally speaking, the younger you are, the more sleep you need, the older you are, the less you need.
 

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