Sleep Sunday Newsletter - Chapter 5 (May 2023): Why do we Sleep; Sleep and exercise; Living with Intent.

Sleep Sunday Newsletter - Chapter 5 (May 2023): Why do we Sleep; Sleep and exercise; Living with Intent.

Sleepy Sunday Newsletter

by 8hrS
Chapter 5 - May

Selfcare Tip of the Month.

👆 Try and host mini-'podcasts' starring... yourself. It sounds stupid and the first few times you'll feel like a nutcase, but it has been extremely beneficial for us. See it as a version of audio-journalling. Very rudimentary: at 8hrS we all have a whatsapp conversation with ourselves going on and when a thought pops up, when we hear something interesting or when we want to work through something, we'll whip out our phone and start talking about it, hashing it out in an audio message to ourselves, even asking questions such as 'so how do we feel about this statement' and responding directly in line. It's a way of structuring thoughts, getting stuff outside your head and out in the open. It has also helped many of us not to ponder too long about things, resulting in a more calm and 'empty' mind (also great once your head hits the pillow and you actually fall asleep instead of revisiting all unprocessed thoughts) & there's always a soundbite to revisit if needed. Some of our best ideas have surfaced this way.
Do we look like a nutcase walking on the street talking to ourselves? Maybe. 
Do we care? 

Sleep Tip of the Month

😴 Take a warm shower or bath 30 minutes before hitting the sack. It's pretty simple science: in order for you to fall asleep, your body temperature needs to drop by about 2 degrees Fahrenheit (0.5 degrees Celsius). Getting out of that hot shower or bath will drop your core temperature and expedite the Sleepiness.
PS: the best bedroom temperature is around 18.3 degrees Celsius. If you really want to get fancy, you have thermoregulated bed covers such as Eight Sleep that will give you the ideal body temperature throughout the night. However the shower and cold room will go a long way!

What to listen, read and watch this Month.

👂 Listen: All the Things They Never Told Us About Female Bodies with Dr. Hazel Wallace on the Working Hard, Hardly working podcast.  Dr. Wallace also touches upon how the menstrual cycle influences Sleep quality and necessities of women. Very often Sleep quality (Deep Sleep and REM sleep stages mostly) decreases leading up to a women's period. Higher body temperature and cramps can also make it harder to fall asleep. All in all, a very informative listen for all genders.

📚 Read: The 4 hour body by Tim Ferriss. He claims to have hacked all processes from business to sex and has an impressive resume to show for it. It's an interesting read full of (well-marketed and sometimes a bit gimmicky) bite-sized knowledge. Worth the read, but Tim... Sleeping 2 hours and performing better than on 8? Don't think so...

👀 Watch: Alex Hormozi is known for his relentless drive and entrepreneurship, basically designing his whole life around productivity and his businesses ( most recently). Therefor it's great to hear the serial entrepreneur talk about the importance of Sleep in his success. In his $100M Dollar Sleep video, Hormozi goes over some of his routines and rituals in a clear and honest way - a must watch for entrepreneurs and Sleep aficionados alike.

So why do we Sleep?

Evolutionary, Sleep doesn't seem to make all that much sense: we're basically paralysed and unconscious for 8 hours straight, vulnerable to our surroundings. Yet evolution doesn't seem to select for shorter nights at all, rather the contrary, meaning it's essential. Scientists have pondered the question 'Why do we Sleep' for decades. Today we want to share some theories, some of which have already been debunked.
1. The Inactivity Theory
The inactivity theory hypothesises that Sleep (or simply put inactivity at night) is an adaptation that served a survival function by keeping organisms out of harm’s way at times when they would be particularly vulnerable. The theory suggests that animals that were able to stay still and quiet during these periods of vulnerability had an advantage over other animals that remained active. A simple counterargument would be that, from a safety perspective, it always seems more optimal to just stay conscious.
2. The Energy Conservation Theory
It's less apparent in our developed world today, but one of the strongest factors in natural selection is competition for and effective utilization of energy resources. The energy conservation theory suggests that the primary function of sleep is to reduce an individual’s energy demand and expenditure during part of the day or night, especially at times when it is least efficient to search for food. Energy metabolism is reduced with as much as 10% during Sleep, basically putting us on 'battery saving mode'.
3. The Restorative Theory
Another explanation for why we sleep is based on the long-held belief that sleep in some way serves to "restore" what is lost in the body while we are awake. Sleep provides an opportunity for the body to repair and rejuvenate itself (also shown by the release of HGH and other restorative goodies). In recent years, these ideas have gained support from empirical evidence collected in human and animal studies. It's even shown that animals entirely deprived of Sleep die within a matter of weeks of organ failure and bodily functions. 
4. The Brain Plasticity Theory
One of the most recent and compelling explanations for why we sleep is based on findings that sleep is correlated to changes in the structure and organization of the brain. This phenomenon, known as brain plasticity, is not entirely understood, but its connection to sleep has several critical implications. It is becoming clear, for example, that sleep plays a critical role in brain development in infants and young children.
More recently, brain plasticity and Sleep links have been found for adults as well, showing that Sleep deprived individuals lose the ability to learn new skills.

In the end, we still don't actually know why we Sleep. But we at 8hrS know one thing for sure: after a good night's Sleep, life is amazing and things seem possible. After a bad night, everything feels harder and life just isn't as good. Why do you think we Sleep?

8hrS May update: Sleep and Exercise

Something that we've been thinking about a lot lately at 8hrS HQ is the intersection of Sleep and Exercise. Everyone involved in the 8hrS story sees him/herself is an athlete (albeit not necessarily professional) and Sleep is one of those essential building blocks to achieve athletic performance. Most of the world's best athletes are actually also some of the world's best Sleepers and every performance center/professional sports team has spent millions on optimising Sleep for their athletes. Some of the world's greatest (Roger Federer, LeBron James and Usain Bolt) are said to sleep as much as 12 hours across the night and naps. Not only do you need Sleep for muscle recovery, it's also crucial for muscle building (you produce up to 70% of your Human Growth Hormone during Deep Sleep stages) and even for cementing newly acquired moves within your motor brain (you go through the motions of any newly acquired skill during REM sleep).
We're currently deepdiving on how we can support our very own athletic performance through boosting our (deep) Sleep performance.
Some interesting partnerships might be in the pipeline... 👀
One last update: we've really gotten into the Twitter game, which is the perfect medium to share some bite-ready snippets of (sleep) knowledge. As most of you already know, we don't just limit it to Sleep (although it remains the main talking point), but also talk about general health, exercise, motivation and even some entrepreneurship. We'd greatly appreciate a follow here
And finally a first product update: Mulberry Silk pillowcases and some other (new) Goodies will be back in stock by end of July - stay tuned for some sexy new colors. ✨ 
A Simple yet Impactful Decision tree...
When is the last time you really really regretted taking a shot at something? If you don't try, the result is set. If you try, you have options.
This applies to business, relationships, fun, adventures, skills and basically every aspect of life. Most decisions are two way doors anyway, meaning that you can always just revert back to baseline. Especially when we're young, you should leverage the time horizon you have to make things right again if it doesn't immediately go the way you want it to.
Speaking from personal experience, we're taking risks with 8hrS as a company on a daily basis. But we also feel like the potential upside of helping people become the best versions of themselves day and night largely offset any possible personal risk.
A note from the Founder.
Pretty often, life is hectic and I feel like I'm not even in the driving seat.
I know: boo f*cking hoo, I'm hardly the only one. And it's not going to change any time soon, nor do I necessarily want it to. However, there's too much clutter going on that doesn't align with my intentions. I don't believe everything should always be done with a reason in mind, sometimes it's beneficial to let life just take over. But I've come to the realisation that all too often I'm 'just going through the motions', without even thinking through what it adds to the equation or even without realising it drains energy on a mental or physical level. It's easy to get trapped in a flow/routine/reference frame that actually saps your energy and drive rather than your drive and energy rocketfuelling your purpose and intentions.
For major decisions in my life (both personal and business-wise), I want to start applying the following mantra: every action should feel like a prayer, devotional and with intent. If it doesn't feel like I really want to devote my time and energy to it and if my intentions are not aligned with who I am and want to be as a person, I don't want it. This goes for the business opportunities I'll pursue, the friends I hang with, the events I take part in and the trips I'll go on. 
Take a look at your actions and intentions from time to time, are you just going through the motions or are you actually, truly enjoying what you do, who you hang with and where you are? Reassess and alter if needed.
I get so much motivation from just writing this newsletter, it feels like having a huge family of pen-palls, and I hope you feel the same.
I'd love to create the same opportunity for everyone to just lay out their thoughts.
If you'd like to actually join the conversation (topic can be anything!), never feel too shy to reach out to me personally at

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