I’m all for the hedonistic rationalization for alcohol. We all need a release. But it is disingenuous to say alcohol has any positive effects beyond that. It is no different than sugar in that regard. My Saturday night cheat meal is filled with both, and I always look forward to it. But I don’t try and pretend that it’s in any way good for me (beyond psychological).
To that end, I completly agree with you that there are plenty of people who enjoy a few drinks without any real damage. I'm saying classify alchohol for what it it. The tobacco and sugar (4,5) lobbies love to pretend that they are something which they are not to sway public opinion. That is dangerous to society.
According to my experience, a good night of sleep is the best cure for procrastination, sadly, our current society don't optimize for sleeping well.
I've ALWAYS considered myself a night owl. I'm still not sure I'm not. But I've spent the past year rising earlier than I'm used to, and the past 7 months rising even earlier than that due to an enforced carpool with my wife. For the first time in my working life, I HAVE to be awake at a certain time (incidentally, far earlier than I'm used to). Instead of snoozing for an hour, I bolt from bed far earlier than I want to. I go to sleep marginally earlier. But my routine is regular I'm happier. I feel better. I feel healthier. I started reading the book and am acutely interested in tuning my sleep times to make this work even better.
Maybe I've never been a night owl. Maybe I've just had horrible sleep habits. Or maybe I AM a night owl, and I'd be even better off than I can possibly imagine, if I take all of these habits and processes and move them later in the day.
But I just feel like you can't possibly know if you're a morning bird or a night owl until you're already, consistently, religiously, getting enough sleep every night, on a consistent sleep/wake schedule.
Not just about an utterly fascinating topic (psychadelic drugs), in terms of history (LSD turning from a scientific wonder drug to illegal), his personal experiences, and the neuroscience behind it, but also just extremely well-written -- a real page-turner. A crazy potent combination of science, spirituality (from a skeptic), and narrative. I expect his book will be a significant part of why psychadelic drugs will be legalized in the near future specifically for therapeutic purposes.
Also +1 for 2017's Why We Sleep . After reading it, I couldn't believe how shockingly ignorant I'd been of how I spend a full third of my life, and how much it affects the other two-thirds -- and the degree to which a lack of sleep prevents us from perceiving the effects of lack of sleep, in a kind of vicious cycle.
- Effect of coffee on sleep: I didn't particularly have problems with sleep but I have stopped drinking way too much coffee, specially late in the day, after understanding its effect on sleep suppression and the ill effects that causes.
- Importance of sleep: I try and get enough sleep and try to maintain a steady sleep cycle as much as I can.
- 2 hours of lost sleep is lot more than 2 hours of lost sleep(say by waking up early for a meeting): Sleep comprises of multiple REM and NREM cycles through the night, some cycles are heavier on REM while other heavier on NREM. And, both are very important and serve different functions. If you miss a couple of hours of sleep, its effect is lot more than just a couple of hours of lost sleep because you didn't get enough of either REM or NREM sleep. And, its not something you ever can get back.
- I used to think its something to be proud about, to be able to function without sleep or by skipping sleep etc. (specially when I was younger), now I think its just stupid :)
Apart from these, its a fascinatingly interesting read, I definitely recommend the book.
I've mentioned the book on several other threads , so I'll avoid repeating here.
Along the same lines of expanding the ability of your body/mind, one that I'm currently reading is "What doesn't kill us" . Pretty fascinating to think that we have a lot more control over our immune system than originally thought.
I'd highly recommend last year's "Why We Sleep"  for more info on memory performance and how it's impacted far more that you'd suspect by full (and quality) sleep, which is in turn impacted far more than you'd suspect by alcohol and stress (not to mention kids).
I've mentioned the book on several other thread , so there's plenty of opinions there if you're interested in knowing more.
His interview on Joe Rogan is a good summary: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pwaWilO_Pig
He covers everything from why we sleep (obv), naps, melatonin, etc. I've just finished it and really enjoyed it.
The Promise of Sleep is an okay book, but it is almost 20 years old now and it shows.
I have read both books and it is remarkable how much more we learned in the time between them.
Most of my life I did the typical not getting enough sleep and then binging on the weekend, which doesn't work well at all. Since reading "Why We Sleep" though, I've changed my lifestyle to prioritize getting quality sleep every single night. That book was pretty eye-opening in obliterating a lot of myths I believed about sleep and then teaching my how complex and important it is, indeed it is just as important as waking time if not more. The idea that time spent asleep is "wasted time" is now absurd to me, as so many bad things happen when you short sleep.
Since getting quality sleep regularly it's been like unlocking a superpower: retaining more information, better progress with strength training and skill-based hobbies, more solid emotional balance and way more motivation / inspiration at work.
Can't recommend that book enough.
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