Thursday, February 26, 2015

Sleep and Other Choices

For many, college is a place to ask new questions and think of things in new ways: what is the role of the individual in society, and what authority structures best facilitate this role?

More practically: if the first obligation of the day is in the afternoon, what should you do in the morning?

Class is at 1pm. At 11pm the previous night, the class-free morning is 3 hours of potential work. At 9am in the morning, however, the class-free morning is 3 hours of potential sleep. Two major decisions are in play here: at 11pm, should the student sleep and leave work for the morning, and at 9am should the student sleep or do the work?

The path of least resistance, of course, is choosing sleep in both circumstances. I personally find that my 9am self has less willpower than my 11pm self, so it's usually a better idea to work late into the night and wake up late (but still before 1pm) the next day.

Moderation, however, is worth pursuing. I leave non-essential work for the morning: this provides motivation to get up, but is not so vital that sleeping instead will ruin my day. There's only one day each week that I have a free morning, and it's worked out reasonably well so far.

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