Science. Anecdotal Evidence. Dymaxion Sleep.

I get an email every once in a while from a reader who happens to be well versed with the concept of sleep hacking as well as possesses the basic knowledge about the functioning of sleep itself. The email usually starts with quoting some statement I made on the blog or in the guides, followed by the reader citing some piece of information or study or anecdotal evidence which contradicts my initial statement and finally ending the email with a long explanation stating why I am wrong.

The weird aspect of this situation is that both, me as well as the guy opposing my work on here, both have a decent argument to back up our claims.  Here’s the funny thing though, neither of us are wrong and neither of us have 100% surety that we are right.

Scientists, philosophers, psychologists and the likes have been trying to figure out the whys and whats of sleep since a few centuries now and despite the advance in technology and the numerous studies conducted over the years, all the great minds put together don’t have a definite answer as to why we sleep, yet. They do have ‘theories’ however and then they have theories to contradict the previous theories and on goes the loop.

No one knows why we sleep or every single intricate functioning of the mind and body during sleep. I have myself presented an elaborate explanation of the internal functioning of the mind and body during sleep in the guides but that is just a droplet in the ocean of knowledge.

We have been advised to not sleep a minute less than 8 hours of sleep a day but at the same time, we have quite a few odd folks who haven’t slept for years but seem to be doing alright. Then we have us, the sleep hackers, who lie somewhere in between by trying to decrease our sleep as much as possible without damaging our body, mind and brain.

Science. Anecdotal Evidence. Dymaxion Sleep.

Here are a couple of questions that are frequently asked when it comes to Dymaxion sleeping and I will try answering them below using science and anecdotal evidence. Obviously there is a contradictory piece of information out there to every single word I say below. But I still choose to present evidence in support of dymaxion sleep to show you guys that dymaxion sleeping or polyphasic sleeping as a whole is not puffery.

1. Will I suffer from __________ if I transition to the dymaxion sleep cycle?

No. According to the Evolutionary theory of sleep and hormesis, you will adapt to the changes you make in your sleep schedule and long as they are progressive in nature. Even giant animals like giraffe and elephants have adapted themselves to sleep on 2 hours of sleep a day and they seem to be functioning perfectly.

What actually is fatal however is complete sleep deprivation. Complete sleep deprivation is when you go without sleep for days or couple of weeks on end. This can also lead to death in extreme cases.

On the Dymaxion/Uberman/Everyman sleep cycle, you are giving the body the essential REM phase of sleep that it needs. Hence, you can function perfectly and need not worry about any harmful effects which are actually caused by complete sleep deprivation.

2. Is SWS phase of sleep not essential?

To answer this, allow me to talk about the two theories of sleep hacking first.

Sleep Hacking Theory #1: Polyphasic sleeping makes the onset of REM phase of sleep immediate and eliminates the seemingly wasteful NREM phases of sleep. It is said that you require 1.5 to 2 hours of REM phase of sleep and hence when you sleep on the Dymaxion/Uberman sleep cycle, your REM onset is immediate and hence you can function perfectly on as little as two hours of sleep a day.

Sleep Hacking Theory #2: On polyphasic sleep schedules, your entire sleep cycles are compressed. Your naps become the miniature versions of your normal 8 hour sleep and since you get all the essential phases of sleep you require, you can sleep for as little as 2 hours a day.

Now here is my answer: No, the SWS phase of sleep is not essential. Here is the reason why, the second theory of sleep hacking fails. If your nap was the miniature version of your monophasic sleep then there would be no need to split your sleep into 3, 4 or 6 naps! One single nap would have been sufficient.

Plus it has been seen via EEGs and Zeos that the mind goes through chunks of REM and NREM sleep in an irregular pattern during the course of the sleep. Hence, it is impossible that the entire monophasic sleep can exist in a miniature version in your nap.

However, various sleep hackers over time like Steve Pavlina, Puredoxyk, over a dozen Youtube vloggers and forum commenters and myself   have documented that it is very much possible to function perfectly on two hours of sleep a day while not even taking into account the great intellectuals in the past like Leonardo Da Vince, Buckminster Fuller, Edison, Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin.

Hence, it makes sense that the Uberman/Dymaxion cycle would be possible only if the onset of REM was immediate because if it wasn’t then the 20/30 minute nap would consist of only N-REM phases of sleep. And if your sleep consisted of only NREM phases of sleep and no REM phases then most polyphasic sleepers on the advanced sleep schedules would be dead by now.

3. Why do you prefer Dymaxion sleep schedule over Everyman/Uberman sleep schedule?

I prefer the Dymaxion sleep schedule over Everyman sleep schedule because the Everyman sleep schedule gets your sleep down to only 4-5 hours a day. If I am dedicating so much effort and mental energy to polyphasic sleeping, than 4-5 hour of sleep a day does not feel worth the effort. The Dymaxion sleep however, not only is it equidistant and easier to keep track of but also lets me get my sleep down to 2 hours a day.

And I have already written in detail about why I prefer the Dymaxion sleep cycle over the Uberman sleep cycle.

In conclusion, it is said that, “The plural of anecdote is not data” but since sleep is such a complex and essential part of human life but still hasn’t been figured out and before we have all the scientific evidence in support of polyphasic sleeping, we have to go with the little scientific and anecdotal evidence available in our hands and live up to our true potential.

There is an another saying which goes as, “The mind sees what it wants to see” and currently my mind knows and can see that us humans can function perfectly on the 2 hour sleep life so that is what I choose to see and stick to, despite all the contradictory theories out there.

About the Author

Pulsify / Creator & Editor

I sleep less and live more. Read more about me here