Last night I had insomnia. Bad. The hammer didn’t fall until 9am, and even when I surrendered to the sweet release of sleep, it was fleeting. I woke up, unaided, less than three hours later. I’m now milling around feeling disoriented and confused. It’s noon. I don’t drink coffee after noon, but I just woke up. Erm? Am I going to crash again here in a few hours? Just what is going on here?
I’m not sure why this happens. Many people associate insomnia with stress, but that doesn’t seem to be my problem. I wasn’t awake all night, obsessing over some real-life worry. I wasn’t up playing a game. I wasn’t pacing around, wired from an accidental dose of caffeene. I just failed to get sleeply at the proper time. I was just awake. And bored.
This brings to mind this very old post of mine about sleep patterns. Now that I’ve thought about this some more, I want to revisit the cold starter / warm starter idea. If I was more motivated I might create some sort of internet test for this, but I don’t have time to puzzle those things out. So, I’m going to just throw this up here and see if anyone cares. Maybe this is so much gibberish to you. That’s fine. I’m not even sure I’m thinking clearly right now.
|Warm Starter||Cold Starter|
|1.||I shiver under the blankets at night, and by morning I’ve thrown them off.||I generally feel hot when going to bed, but by morning I’m cold and wrapped in blankets.|
|2.||When fighting an illness, the symptoms grow during the day and peak in the evening. When I wake up in the morning I usually feel better than when I went to sleep. Sleep time tends to be when I recover.||When fighting an illness, I wake up feeling horrible and then the symptoms subside as the day wears on. If I go to sleep, I’ll feel worse again when I wake up. It’s like I get worse when I sleep.|
|3.||I prefer to do my social stuff (meetings, phone calls, talking to customers) in the morning. I’m generally more quiet as the day goes on.||Ugh. When I wake up I need a few hours before I’m ready to talk to people.|
|4.||I wake up hungry.||I’m not interested in food until I’ve been awake for a few hours.|
|5.||I’m most creative in the hours just after waking up.||I’m most creative in the hours before bedtime.|
|6.||I bounce out of bed in the morning, but by evening I’m starting to drag.||I drag myself out of bed in the morning, but by evening I feel energetic.|
|7.||I find direct sunlight invigorating.||I find direct sunlight exhausting.|
|8.||Music more in the morning than in the evening.||Music more in the evening than in the morning.|
|9.||I like to laugh and joke around in the mornings.||I don’t generally find things funny until I’ve been awake a while.|
|10.||I’m glad to be up once I’m out of bed. I’m glad to hit the sack in the evening.||I’m reluctant to wake up in the morning, and reluctant to go to bed in the evening.|
I realize this is exceedingly unscientific, but humor me here. I predict that most people will fall firmly into one column or the other. This gets a little difficult though, because some people have jobs which require them to be social in the mornings, or where they naturally hear music at the start of the day. Still, I’m most interested in how someone behaves when left to their own devices. Weekends and vacations are probably a better indicator of true behavior as opposed to the workday grind.
My thinking – with no evidence to back it up – is that most people are going to be almost all cold or all warm. I’m going to take an additional guess and predict more warm starters than cold ones. Everyone else always seems too dang cheerful in the mornings. I explain to people how sleeping when sick makes me feel worse, and they look at me like I’m some sort of freak. Very few people understand how sunlight can be “tiring”, but that’s exactly how it feels to me.
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