Why Everything You Know About Sleep Is A Lie

I depend on other people's science. There are researchers, and there are research-consumers -- I'm the latter. The same goes for farming and car repair and computer-smithing: When someone handles it for me, I'm free to reach my Maslowian peak, and if society forces me to do it myself, I'll be exposed as an adult-clothes-wearing baby. Or two short guys in a long coat.

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Whichever sight gag your heart needs, friend.

I want a scientific guide to how I should sleep. I also want that guide handed to me. It should be an easy research project for the experts, right? Unlike parkour or texting while driving, sleep is not a new skill. We've been doing it for thousands of years, on and off. So I should be a few Google keystrokes away from knowing I need eight solid hours a night, or that I ought to join the polyphasic community, or that I can use 1 SIMPLE SLEEP TRICK THAT MAKES SLEEP-TRAINERS HATE HIM.

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The more I dig into sleep research, I'm finding that we seem to know much less than I would have guessed about what the human body needs every night. If you've read the De-Textbook ... well, first of all, congrats on the wealth and happiness pouring into your life daily. Second, you know that hundreds of years ago our electricity-deprived ancestors slept in smaller chunks of time, instead of an unbroken night of slumber. And, sure, our prehistoric ancestors didn't Fitbit their sleep goals. But we think they got a longer and earlier night's rest than we do, because scientists forced test subjects to live in Stone Age conditions, because sometimes science is pranks.

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"Scalpel. Forceps. Hidden camera and five actors who are in on it."

We know we need to sleep. It's like paying your taxes: You can put it off for a long time and there are rich people who I'm told know how to skip it, but for folks like you and me it's an obligation. And for today's Cracked Video Where We Talk To You Directly, I pulled together everything we think we know about the sleep we build our entire lives around getting. Maybe watching it will make you a better sleeper? Thus improving your life? Or it'll just make you laugh? I don't want to hard-sell you. You're busy and you'll check this out if you feel moved to do so. You do you.

Also, it's possible to murder someone while you're asleep SO WATCH THIS VIDEO OR YOU WILL LEARN NOTHING AND KILL AGAIN.

Be sure to follow us on Facebook and YouTube, where you can catch all our video content, such as 5 Rules for Sleeping In Bed With Your Friends and other videos you won't see on the site!

Also check out 5 Ways To Hack Your Brain Into Awesomeness and 5 Ways to Trick Your Body Into Being More Awesome.

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Alex Schmidt

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