Has anyone ever told you that you sleep like a bear? Well, they may be right. According to sleep specialist Dr. Michael Breus, our daily routines can be broken down into four sleep animals—bear, lion, wolf, and dolphin.
Each animal represents a chronotype, which is our unique biological rhythm that regulates when we’re most productive, most likely to exercise, as well as our sleep needs. Dr. Breus has formulated a fun and easy quiz that will break down which animal best describes your routine.
Created in conjunction with his book, The Power of When: Discover Your Chronotype, this is one quiz that might actually have an effect on your productivity. For instance, are you more alert and ready to shoot out emails first thing in the morning? Do you need a power nap in the afternoon or are you too busy brainstorming new ideas?
Let’s break down each sleep animal and understand how we can follow our internal clocks.
Bears will want a full 8 hours to sleep in order to get moving for the day. The good news is, they also benefit from a 20-minute afternoon power nap.
People who are bears are most productive in pushing out difficult tasks and email from 10 am to 12 pm. Bears will want to hit the gym early evening, while an hour of brainstorming is best left for right after dinner.
Lions wake up with tons of energy and do their big-picture planning by 7 am. Holding meetings and conjuring up new projects all happens by mid-afternoon, but all this activity means Lions are exhausted by the evening.
Thus, they’re the earliest to bed of all the animals, dozing off around 10:30 pm.
More of night owl? You may just be a wolf. They’ll need two alarms to get them out of bed, and get down to work later than the other sleep animals.
Most big ideas will get looked at after lunch, with dinner at 8 pm. Wolves will finally drift off to sleep around midnight, making sure they set those alarms so they’ll wake up in the morning!
If you suffer from insomnia or are a light sleeper, you are most likely a dolphin. Dolphins rise on the earlier side and do their creative work right after breakfast and coffee. They may need to take a brisk afternoon walk to shake off sleepiness before diving into mentally taxing work.
Meditation or yoga after work may help relax dolphins before they turn off for the night around 11:30 pm.
Don’t forget to take the sleep animal quiz.