Are You Getting Too Much Sleep?

      49 Comments on Are You Getting Too Much Sleep?

If you’re like me, then you’ve spent countless years thinking “I need at least 8 hours of sleep every night” and being stressed and anxious on the nights when it wasn’t going to happen. Today, I want to challenge your position on sleep. Not the position in which you sleep, but your position on the number of hours you need each night.

This isn’t because I want you to be tired or dragging throughout the day, but because I think you may surprise yourself, kind of like I did.

A couple weeks ago my schedule was jam packed. It was one of those weeks where I couldn’t help but run from one thing to the other and the idea of more than 6 hours of sleep each night was mind boggling. How I felt through that week was interesting though…

I was energized throughout the day.

I woke up easily with or before my alarm in the morning.

I felt clear, focused and motivated.

Then an evening came when I had more time to sleep. I got right around 8 hours and woke up the next morning exhausted, sore, lazy and spent the day feeling like I needed an IV of coffee.

sleep PIN

Since this first incident, I’ve continued to test this theory and here’s what I’ve learned:

  • The National Sleep Foundation suggests 7-9 hours of sleep per night for adults 26-64 years old
  • My diet determines how my body feels when I wake up in the morning (excessive sugar = SORE, tired and lazy)
  • My sweet spot is 6-6 ½ hours each night, any less OR any more and it’s hard to get out of bed
  • Diffusing lavender essential oils while I fall asleep is divine (Note: this is the diffuser I have but in black)

In my search to make myself feel like the best, I’m learning what works, what doesn’t and when something needs to change. I’ve talked to a few friends who have found similar things about themselves.

Now I’m not trying to take your sleep away from you, but rather present the idea that if something isn’t working for you right now, don’t discount that it could be sleep (and potentially in the least expected direction).

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Do you know your sleep sweet spot?

Could you be getting too much sleep?

49 thoughts on “Are You Getting Too Much Sleep?

  1. Pam

    My sweet spot has been 6 hours for years. If I get more than that, I’m exhausted all day. This post is basically the same thoughts I have on sleep.

    Though, as I approach 30, I’m finding I need more sleep than before.
    Pam recently posted…Currently Reading & Book WishlistMy Profile

    1. Katie Post author

      Really? As I approach 30, I find I’m needing less. It’s so crazy how we’re all just a little different.

      1. Pam

        It definitely is! I needed around 4-5 when I was younger. Now I’m in the 5-6 range. So not a big jump, but definitely a slight change. I’m sure that’ll change again when we finally have kids of our own.

    1. Katie Post author

      During the week I often wake up around 4:15…is it weird if I tell you it’s not uncommon for that to happen on the weekends too (naturally)? haha

        1. Katie Post author

          I totally woke up at 4am on my own this morning, then told myself “no, sleep until at least 5” and then couldn’t get out of bed until 7…just continuing to prove my point

  2. JeeYoung

    I definitely do best when I get 7 hours, but it also definitely depends on the quality of sleep! I can get six restful hours and be just as fine as when I get 8 restless sleeps!

  3. Sydney @ Bird Bites

    This is interesting! I’ve noticed that if I get more or less than 7 1/2 to 8 hours, I’m exhausted and cranky. I’ve also noticed that my bedtime makes a difference in how i feel the next day too, and since have tried to make my weekend bed time closer to my weeknight bed time. Thanks for sharing!
    Sydney @ Bird Bites recently posted…Arms & Abs Featuring TRXMy Profile

    1. Katie Post author

      Seriously!! Do it!! It’s so empowering to me and is really helping me wake up feeling refreshed!

  4. Crystal // Dreams, etc.

    Great post! I always thought that I should get at least 8 hours of sleep a night (which I never do). I tend to get too little sleep (5 hours usually, 4 hours more often than it should happen… during the week, I get more on the weekend) so I try to focus on getting more. But one thing I have found is that if I get 8 hours of sleep I have a hard time waking up and I’m really lethargic. And that feeling will last for the entire day. When I get 6 – 7 hours, I feel much better. Also, if I’m well-rested and I don’t set an alarm I tend to wake up after about 6 – 7 hours of sleep, so I think that’s my ideal sleep range. 🙂
    Crystal // Dreams, etc. recently posted…Poem-a-Day // My Secret Project & What I LearnedMy Profile

    1. Katie Post author

      Ohhh now that’s an interesting thought! I bet you’re right and I really wouldn’t be surprised if we’re all that way…a little winter semi-hibernation tendencies? 😉

  5. Tiffany Griffin

    A few months ago I read about how getting too much sleep is just as bad as getting too little. I find that I actually need more sleep. I would be dying for a nap with only 6.5 hours of sleep. I find that 8 (and sometimes even 9) hours of sleep is perfect for me. If I get less than that, I end up feeling drowsy.
    Tiffany Griffin recently posted…5 Free Image Editing ProgramsMy Profile

    1. Katie Post author

      It’s so funny how we’re all so different! I find myself dying for a nap at 8-9 hours of sleep!

  6. Amie

    This is thought-provoking…I seriously need to do this lol. For a while now I’ve been trying to find what my sleep schedule is and I can’t seem to figure it out, is it 8 hours, 7.5 hours, 7? I haven’t tried 6 hours yet, so I think that will be my next step. Right now, I’ve been getting 8 hours and it is just so, so hard to get out of bed. But I’ve figured this is just because my bed is just so darn comfy lol. Thank you for posting!

    1. Katie Post author

      I think it’s also important to try the same amount of sleep over a few days to really figure out the pattern and not just the possibility that you had one 6 hour sleep but slept horribly because you had a cup of coffee too late in the day or something like that..

      1. Amie

        Okay, so an update: I tried it last night! 6.5 hours of sleep and I’m going to give it a few more days to see if this is something solid or not. Excited for a change. Thank you!

    1. Katie Post author

      That’s the interesting thing because I’m totally that way. It becomes so much harder for me to get out of bed with 8+ hours as my body becomes insanely SORE.

  7. Megan Gonzalez

    That’s interesting because I’ve found when I get about 6 hours, I feel pretty great, but when I manage a day I can stretch to 9 hours, I feel exhausted. So do you go to sleep later or get up earlier? I’ve found that no matter when I get up that my brain doesn’t kick in until 9 am. So last night I slept from about 1:30 to 9 and woke up ready to go. I’ve always had sleep troubles so this may be something to think about.

    1. Katie Post author

      I’m an early riser by nature, it’s my prime time. Plus, I love to peace of early morning so I usually go to bed around 10 and wake up around 4/4:15. 🙂

    1. Katie Post author

      Isn’t it amazing how our diet and lifestyle ALSO plays a factor? Too much sugar and I REALLY can’t get out of bed the next day as I’m in physical pain. I always find that the 8-9+ and I need a NAP within the first 3-4 hours of being awake.

  8. Pete

    I’m a HUGE supporter of a preaching QUALITY sleep over quantity. We get too ingrained in our digital 24-7 lifestyles sometimes and it is so very important to slow everything down at the end of the night and get a great night of rest. The interesting thing is that so many of the most successful people throughout history have a few things in common and (usually) one of those common themes is quality sleep … or at the very least, mindful practices to get more rest from the grind. Thanks for sharing!
    Pete recently posted…Yo! Momma: When is sex after pregnancy OK? You ask. We answer.My Profile

    1. Katie Post author

      Oh girl I get that! I learned years ago that when I get around 4 hours of sleep (thankfully, this isn’t a common occurrence anymore), I am SO nauseous for hours after getting up!

    1. Katie Post author

      Oh yes! If I eat too much sugar, I wake up the next morning and I’m in physical pain when I try to get out of bed!

  9. Rebecca Hicks

    Funny you wrote about this, because just yesterday I was thinking about how much sleep I have been getting lately and I was amazed! I realized that I’ve been getting around 6 1/2-7 hours of sleep every night and I feel so much more energized and awake throughout the day than on those that I get more than 7. Isn’t that crazy?! I don’t need naps in the afternoon anymore and I’m more likely to get my workouts in too. I think I’ve found my sweet spot!
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