Sleep is a very important but highly undervalued entity in IIT Bombay. I mean, 4 hours of sleep per day on an average is considered normal ! And with 6-7 hrs of sleep I would consider myself lucky to be able to sleep so much!
This might seem extreme, but 4 hours a day is manageable! Sleep for 4 hours everyday for just 2 weeks and you will be surprised why you ever wasted so much time sleeping when 4 hours seem enough!
Then why do they say 7 hours of sleep is important ?
I worked on this question for a while and here’s the thing! you might be able to save up on a lot of time when you sleep for only 4 hrs, but what you do in that time and how effectively you do it also matters…
A week ago, I was trying to understand some microprocessor theory for a quiz – took 2 hours, up at 2:30 – couldn’t solve it (not to mention, i had slept for only 3 hrs the night before!) Slept for 6 hours, woke up and 5 minutes is all it took to figure the whole thing out!
I just got done with my mid-semester exams* …times when variable sleep patterns are a given. Had 4 tests in 3 days and a resume submission to top it…so sleep was not a luxury I could afford. Got some 3 hours of sleep on a an average..screwed up every single paper! A friend of mine who studies with me, was hallucinating during a paper, I almost slept during one of mine! Certainly not worth the 4 hours I saved
If I draw a plot of efficiency versus sleep, it goes somewhat like this- sleep for 4 hours and you save a lot of time, but effectiveness is very low. 3 hours and you will effectively be a zombie (Da Vinci used to sleep for 3 hrs a day – but come on…he’s Da Vinci!)— sleep or lack thereof affects the brain in a huge way!
So 3 hrs is way too less…from experience, 4 hours is not good either, 5 hours still not upto the mark (our DOSA (Dean Of Student Affairs) forwarded en e-mail telling us “sleep for only 5 hours every day , and you might just die!” )
8 hours is good – but few can actually do that here (I know a guy who does- people mistake him for an M.Tech! social life -zero! Zilch! NIL) 9 hours is more than required, and 10 hours is just a pathetic waste of time!
So 6/7 hours seems optimum – 6.5 –the Magic Number! Perfect balance of Focus and Time.
Bottomline: around 6 hours everyday and I’ll be OK.
So I guess I need to catch up on my sleep…
* This post was written last semester, but never posted!