In today’s era of 24/7 business, sleep is becoming more and more underrated, and yet — no one is questioning the benefits healthy sleep gives us.

We are seeing sleep as unproductive activity, because we’re not making anything while asleep.

People like to brag about their lack of sleep, like it's an achievement you could be proud of and claiming that "Sleep is for the weak". Behind the curtain, the assumption is:

time awake - time asleep = productivity

The truth couldn't be further.

Sleep is a productivity booster. It appears people are finding it hard to perceive all the gains sleep gives us, since the benefits are not momental. It's considered unproductive, since we're usually not moving while being asleep.

As neuroscientist Jeff Iliff's recent research finds out, sleep turns maintenance mode on for our brain. In his TED talk, he explains that each cell in our body, produces waste, a byproduct of converting nutrients. While every other organ uses the lymphatic system to dump the waste for later disposal, the brain is a unique organ that is disconnected from that system. There are no lymphatic vessels in the brain and the blood vessels have to take the role of the lymphatic system. Essentially, the blood vessels become capable of transporting the waste from your brain, but it only happens when you fall asleep.

Sleep removes waste and byproducts from your brain, the waste that fills up through the day. It makes you think more clearly, decreases level of stress and improves creativity.

Arousal is for the weak.

Written by

Hrvoje Šimić

@shime_sh