[Official answer: NO. This is a TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE idea! Do NOT do this, EVER! See my own answer to this question for more explanation for why I say this now.]

I forget what the 'official' terminology is.

Basically the idea as it was explained to me was to stay up beyond the normal amount of time you'd stay awake, and once you reach that 'tired' point you start drinking warm drinks (cocoa, tea, whatever tickles your fancy) and meditate while having something that will guarantee you stay calmly awake.

Static meditation being discouraged for non experienced practitioners because they're likely to fall asleep! =) Generally the suggested activities consist of anything that is 'soft', 'calming', and actually involves input and/or results. Hand crafting [especially fabric based], calligraphy or other arts, mild social activities with others involved, etc.

[Sometimes these activities would be coupled with a 'sweat', which is an event wherein you build a structure outdoors similar to a tent and cover it with blankets during the day. Similar in concept to a sauna, but generally the intention is to keep the occupants comfortably warm but under the point of perspiration. Also sometimes people will include incense burning or smoking of hookahs, shisha, or ritual and/or spirit drugs.]

The duration was said to be 50% of a normal 'awake' cycle beyond a normal sleeping point for first timers and beginners, and 'experts' could go as long as a week or more in this state.

I've heard many arguments for pros and cons to this idea, just wondering if it was popular around these parts or not. Any validity to this concept being functional? Bad idea? Good idea? Health risks are also worth mentioning if there are any you know of. Etc etc.

To respond more thoroughly to a request for clarification: "@Snow - What is this meant to achieve? Is it a way of sleeping less? Or perhaps a way to enter some altered state of mind?"

The latter, a way of achieving an alternative style of meditation. Supposedly can induce very inspired artwork, as one possible result. I do not know all of the potential results, though I could speculate endlessly.

[The following is my attempt at explaining the concept as I understood it, since my understanding of the topic is extremely limited the following may be misinformed, misquoted, or just plain false.]

Many forms of meditation involve accessing the subconscious, commonly through "shortcuts" such as self induced hypnosis. Depending on the depth of the 'trance' an individual is placed in, in some situations it can be difficult to wake the 'sleeper', and in others it can be dangerous or harmful to the 'sleeper' to be interrupted abruptly.

The method this question refers to is supposed to facilitate a few different [potential] purposes, such as allowing entering a 'meditative' state while still being physically active and mobile, communicating while in a deeper meditative state than is generally possible, allowing 'spirit guides' to interact with new practitioners more directly with less risk of influencing the pupil.

[When in a hypnotic induced state one can be extremely vulnerable to outside influence, especially if the person interacting with them is not extremely cautious about how they phrase what they say. There is a fine line between an inquiry that allows a genuine response from the 'sleeper', and a "suggestion" that implies or leads the 'sleeper' to a preferred response.]

asked 15 Jan '12, 10:35

Snow's gravatar image


edited 17 Feb '12, 19:34

@Snow - What is this meant to achieve? Is it a way of sleeping less? Or perhaps a way to enter some altered state of mind?

(15 Jan '12, 14:16) Stingray

The latter, a way of achieving an alternative style of meditation. Supposedly can induce very inspired artwork, as one possible result. I do not know all of the potential results, though I could speculate endlessly.

(15 Jan '12, 14:21) Snow

well i can tell you one thing when you are tired you sleep. yes if you are able to reamin lucid you will see things pass very fast in front of you. but it is like putting a glass under a dripping focet. it is alot more beneficial to just meditate or lucid dream. experience and enjoy.

(15 Jan '12, 14:24) white tiger

@white tiger: The sensation you describe is unusual to me. When I am sleep deprived I regularly find that I operate faster, not slower. I will often communicate more, generally in a 'looser' fashion.

The only time I get 'slow' as you describe is when I don't consume appropriate amounts of nutrition for my body to handle the strenuous circumstances.

Also, could you convert this comment to an answer? Because I'd like to be able to respond to it in a bit more length. For example, one might say "when you are hungry you eat", but this isn't necessarily true, is it?

(15 Jan '12, 14:26) Snow

Sounds to complicated and I'm getting tired thinking about it. Hope I missed something and there is a benefit to you.

(15 Jan '12, 15:44) Tom

@Tom: Lol. ^_^ I apologize, I have a nasty habit of making things sound much more complex than they really are.

In simplicity the concept is this: Get tired, stay conscious, do activities expecting a different result than normal. Your mind acts differently when under different sets of stimuli, meditation itself being an excellent example of this.

The point is simply to create a new 'vantage point' for your mind, and see what happens. The comments regarding doing art and things like that are because I was told that these activities can be very different in this circumstances. =)

(15 Jan '12, 15:49) Snow
showing 0 of 6 show 6 more comments

No, listen to your friend White Tiger and Paulina and me; someone who has been there. Don't do it. There are serious consequences to the body and mind if sleep deprived. It leads to a breakdown of the nervous system and can cause other serious and psychological damage. Why do you think sleep deprivation has been used as a form of torture for centuries and why it is now outlawed - because it is TORTURE?

" I will often communicate more, generally in a 'looser' fashion." Now do you see how easily sleep deprivation or Torture can work to gain valuable and secret information?

" When I am sleep deprived I regularly find that I operate faster, not slower." The manic phase for anyone who is Bipolar is usually preceded by insomnia and sleep deprivation. Sleep deprivation can produce mania in susceptible individuals; especially anyone who suffers from a mood disorders such as depression or anxiety and it sounds like you may be one of those people (not bipolar - just susceptible ). There have been many studies proving this.

Paulina is correct; it will cause you to hallucinate and has also been used in brain washing techniques. Hallucinations are NOT revelations and not the same as the 'visions' you may have when you meditate or pray. The "visions" I had when meditating while being sleep deprived were hallucinations.

Do yourself a favor, if you haven't been sleeping well; maybe it's time to get off the computer and go to bed. The light from a computer screen may be too stimulating and may cause insomnia. Being sleep deprived will NOT solve any of your issues; it will only aggravate the issues you have now and add new ones.

Edited to remove controversial and objectionable paragraph


answered 15 Jan '12, 22:55

ele's gravatar image


edited 16 Jan '12, 12:28


You know, some people will say anything to sell a book. I think it's a very dangerous gimmick. As you've seen in the news this year - sweat lodges can be very dangerous also. Heat, dehydration and loss of sleep ALL can and do alter the mind and cause hallucinations.

(15 Jan '12, 23:03) ele

Woa. Lol. Thanks for the information.

I'm not actually intending to do anything like this without thorough research (both medical and spiritual). I was only asking as another potential source of input. But as I said, I've heard many pros and cons on this topic.

I'm also confused about the level of concern regarding lack of sleep here. I've been told that EMTs, nurses, doctors, firemen, and anyone in military training will regularly run shifts anywhere from 14 hours to in excess of 28 hours in extreme conditions. [Zero personal understanding of any of this, just word of mouth]

(15 Jan '12, 23:42) Snow

"run shifts anywhere from 14 hours to in excess of 28 hours" True enough! I wasn't talking about 24 hours w/o sleep.

Glad to hear you are a man who does his research first!

(16 Jan '12, 00:18) ele

ele lsd also brings sleep deprivation.LSD can cause pupil dilation, reduced appetite (for some, it increases), and wakefulness. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lysergic_acid_diethylamide LSD causes expansion and an altered experience of senses, emotions, memories, time, and awareness for 6 to 14 hours,

(16 Jan '12, 01:54) white tiger

This is a wonderful answer all except the LSD bit for drugs are not the answer either and can be just as harmful.

(16 Jan '12, 10:41) Paulina 1

I agree Paulina - I was trying to stress a point - I was NOT advocating LSD - This is what I wrote -

"If it's an altered state of mind you're after - try LSD - I'm NOT advocating it; just saying it has fewer side effects and is much safer than being deprived of sleep. I'm ONLY saying this or making this comparison because I'm trying to stress how dangerous being sleep deprived is!"

I will edit my answer and delete the paragraph - yay, I KNEW I shouldn't of wrote it; but didn't listen to my inner voice.

Thank you.....

(16 Jan '12, 12:25) ele

he should try meditation it is far better then anny trip.

(16 Jan '12, 12:58) white tiger

Snow talked about creativity; he said this - "The latter, a way of achieving an alternative style of meditation. Supposedly can induce very inspired artwork, as one possible result". (I think he said it a little differently before he edited his question - not sure - could be in error - but he made the same point)

(16 Jan '12, 13:25) ele

I'm NOT going to debate the pro's and con's of using a substance to alter one's state of conscientiousness. Many years ago; I did extensive research on this subject. Many great intellects have tried it and many artists claim they were inspired. WTS, personally I don't even drink and yes, White Tiger, meditation is the best trip!

(16 Jan '12, 13:26) ele

That is exactly what I wrote, Ele, and you can check edit revisions by clicking on the blue text that says "Edited Yesterday". The line you refer to was added in revision 8, and initially came from my comment on the question immediately following Stingray's.

And I very clearly understood that you meant drugs [while in themselves can be a very bad idea] could be a safer option than this, though both would be ill advisable.

Your comment was taken very clearly, I have no intention in running out and getting blitzed and then saying "BUT YOU SAID DRUGS WERE GOOD". =)

(16 Jan '12, 16:58) Snow

You don't need to worry, your words were very welcome and insightful and I will not be taking them out of context.. lol. I feel like people believe me to be very ignorant.. Of course I [like everyone] regularly do things that would make me come off as stupid, but I assure you that I'm not the dullest blade on the chopping block.

Regarding your removal of that paragraph and your inner voice, I am very glad you didn't listen and included it, because I think it was important. It offers a very clear reference point for understanding where you personally rate dangerous activities, [...

(16 Jan '12, 17:02) Snow

...] And that kind of information is very valuable when trying to understand what someone is saying.

Without tone of voice and gestures [responsible for more than 50% of what we are 'really' saying], we are left with a very limited form of communication in words alone. Your comparison served as an excellent reference point for understanding your point of view and where it was coming from.

If I were in your situation I would simply edit that paragraph to repeat [what you already said], perhaps with bold this time.

Either way, thank you for sharing. I appreciate it greatly. =)

(16 Jan '12, 17:08) Snow

@ele: Also, just to throw this out there: I actually enjoy being a very severe computer nerd. ;) Re: "Do yourself a favor, if you haven't been sleeping well; maybe it's time to get off the computer and go to bed."

I do suffer from lots of different sleep problems, but spending more/less time on the computer doesn't affect me. I try meditating, laying in bed, exercising, yoga, running, etc. My problems are all in my head unfortunately, which could be a good thing if I were better at handling them. =P

As an aside, I'm actually a very physically active person believe it or not.

(16 Jan '12, 18:51) Snow

Weird - I left a comment for you - Snow - a couple hours ago and I see it's not here. This is what I said:

Ah Snow - you made me laugh - after a very exasperating day - thank you - I shall respond later....

(16 Jan '12, 22:48) ele

@Snow "I feel like people believe me to be very ignorant" NO! NO! NOT at ALL! I don't and I doubt if anyone else here does either. Stop putting yourself down! Don't be so hard on yourself! Stop thinking that way! Watch what you say about yourself - you know the LOA as well as I do! I think you are young and enthusiastic with a sense of adventure (exploring, discovering) and your passion and excitement and zest for life is driving you to experience everything and learn as much as you can, as fast as you can. So many others are just like you; in a hurry.

(16 Jan '12, 22:54) ele

@Snow . Slow down - enjoy the journey - take time to smell the roses along the way.

I appreciate your analogy, responses and your insight. I think I may have over reacted due to my own personal history . I know you get-it. You are wiser than you give yourself credit and it's been my experience - severe computer nerds are NEVER dull! Work on your self esteem. I don't ever want to hear you put yourself down AGAIN and never ever be afraid to ask questions.

lol - I say "NOT the sharpest knife in the drawer" - never heard "dullest blade on the chopping block" .

(16 Jan '12, 22:55) ele

@ele: "I don't and I doubt if anyone else here does either." I believe that you do not, as that is what you said, but there have been a few occasions where some of my words have been met with less than subtle comments. Generally when I disagree with any of the opinions here the responses are along the lines of implying they believe I do not have a full enough understanding to come to the same conclusion as them [i.e: the 'correct' conclusion] or I have enough learning but lack the intelligence to come to their conclusion. It doesn't bother me, but it is something I have noticed.. repeatedly.

(17 Jan '12, 03:47) Snow

stop believing and have faith.5. Jesus said, "Know what is in front of your face, and what is hidden from you will be disclosed to you.

For there is nothing hidden that will not be revealed. [And there is nothing buried that will not be raised.] 2. Jesus said, "Those who seek should not stop seeking until they find. When they find, they will be disturbed. When they are disturbed, they will marvel, and will reign over all. [And after they have reigned they will rest.] "http://www.gnosis.org/naghamm/gosthom.html

(17 Jan '12, 03:54) white tiger

@ele: Don't worry, my confidence issues are definitely not in the intelligence department. My comment was meant to imply that there are some HERE who seem to look down on me, and that is reflected in their words. Sometimes the lack of tone of voice and gestures can be a curse, but in certain situations it allows for someone's "true" message to be heard very clearly, usually more clearly than they intended.

As for "knowing the LOA", I actually don't believe or claim to know it at all, simply because I believe that the LOA as it is interpreted by this community is missing a LOT of details.

(17 Jan '12, 03:58) Snow

@ele: Regarding my zest and desire to learn: Just because my priority list appears different than most does not mean I am in a hurry. I enjoy learning, but that does not mean I am in a rush to do so. In fact, I've been archiving my emails regarding the Master Key system (which clearly instructs taking it slowly) and taking it even slower than is suggested, because that is what feels right for me. If I were to ask every question that enters my head here, I would very quickly and effortlessly fill the entire first page on a daily basis whenever I sat down. =)

(17 Jan '12, 04:00) Snow

@ele: And I don't believe I ever claimed to be 'dull', especially not because I am a nerd. You came up with that all on your own. ;)

Random irrelevant point: Regarding my 'nerd' status, I'm actually not just a nerd. I'm a super nerd, as I like to call my self. I am to nerds what nerds are to normal people. =D When my friends (many of whom are employed as professional computer technicians) need help, they don't call their bosses or other consultants, they call me. ;)

And I'm not afraid to ask questions because I'm afraid of questions, but I purposely hold myself back because if I didn't[...

(17 Jan '12, 04:03) Snow

@ele: ...] I would quickly manage to aggravate everyone here. =) I simply run at a faster pace than most people, especially when it comes to the computer. I consistently type over 100 WPM comfortably without rushing, and can get close to 200 WPM when transcribing written text and in a hurry. ^_^

So when I make comments about me not asking all the questions I'd perhaps like to it isn't because I'm afraid of the questions, but because I know that the response will not be positive from everyone, especially here.

So it isn't that I don't appreciate your suggestion to slow down, but it just

(17 Jan '12, 04:08) Snow

@ele: ...] isn't right for me, because as far as I am concerned (according to my own pace) I'm already moving very slowly. ^_^

And finally, my comment was off the top of my head. Generally I will say things more like "Sharpest marble" or "brightest knife in the drawer", but I don't think that humor would go over well in this crowd, so I avoid it. ^_^

Whew. That was a lot of typing. =D Thanks again as always. I appreciate everything you've had to say. You told me to be aware of my confidence issues, I advise you to the same. One comment from a person here and you assumed you made a mistake.

(17 Jan '12, 04:11) Snow

@ele: And re: the comment regarding fear of questions [again], I could provide a list of people here who would gladly welcome my questions, and they are in fact the people who I really would like to discuss with in the first place, but I am not someone who likes to isolate or offend anyone, and enjoy making friends in everyone, even the unfriendly or unaccepting types.

So I'm taking it easy, and moving quite slowly. Of course this means I do have a fear, and that fear is of people not liking me. But it isn't that 'fear' that stops me, just my preference to avoid those situations. =)

(17 Jan '12, 04:18) Snow

@white tiger: I have absolutely NO clue what you mean by your comment.. lol. Usually I can get a general idea of what you're trying to imply with your very cryptic messages, but I admit that this one has completely eluded me and gone straight over my head.

(17 Jan '12, 04:19) Snow

you said:My comment was meant to imply that there are some HERE who seem to look down on me, and that is reflected in their words. Sometimes the lack of tone of voice and gestures can be a curse, but in certain situations it allows for someone's "true" message to be heard very clearly, usually more clearly than they intended. you are starting to have eyes that see and ear that ears. but you are still in belief you need to move to faith.know your self and know others. are you disturbed do you marvel? after you can reign and rest. am i a divider? do you see motion and rest in me?

(17 Jan '12, 04:35) white tiger

i know and i do not judge. be the circle.

(17 Jan '12, 04:37) white tiger

@WT: "but you are still in belief you need to move to faith.know your self and know others. are you disturbed do you marvel? after you can reign and rest. am i a divider? do you see motion and rest in me?"

Your first sentence involves semantics that I don't think I comprehend, and if I do then I disagree. When I hear "faith" I think of people telling me to "believe with a child like faith", meant to imply "Don't question it, just believe it is true because we say so." I got very used to hearing this from Christian pastors and priests when I asked them any questions about the Bible/religion.

(17 Jan '12, 04:58) Snow

@WT: The rest of those sentences I do not comprehend at all, even slightly. Including this one: "i know and i do not judge. be the circle."

(17 Jan '12, 04:58) Snow

@Snow - I sincerely apologize - I was trying to tell you what I thought; and YES, I gave you unsolicited advice; but I wasn't judging you. I think you are creating conflict and drama, unnecessarily - which only creates more of what you don't want.

(17 Jan '12, 16:11) ele

@Snow I don't know your history at IQ and it does NOT matter - yesterday is gone and tomorrow has not arrived yet - focus on today . Umm, I also stand corrected; I'll take your word for it - you are not in a hurry. I did NOT mean to imply there was anything wrong with being in a hurry, if you were - it was more a reflection of youth . I think, at times, you take words out of context and that is what I mean by creating conflict or drama.

(17 Jan '12, 16:13) ele

@Snow As for my issues with self esteem; yes, unfortunately I'm not as self confident as I would like to be. I have problems - BUT - mentioning LSD, was a mistake and NO reflection on my self esteem. Both Paulina and White Tiger brought it to my attention and I already knew I should NOT have mentioned it. It's was also reflected when I received only 2 up votes with my answer and I assume one of the votes came from you. Snow - as for my knife quote - I was laughing over regional differences is all and my intention was to inject humor, not to insult....

(17 Jan '12, 16:14) ele

@ Snow, I'm not sure if this is an issue with you or not; but I know what it is like to be over analytical and left brained and I know how hard it is for me to shut down my thoughts . I know what it is like to not be able to stop thinking... I've had to teach myself to let go and trust my intuition..

(17 Jan '12, 16:15) ele

well you see snow you do not know the difference between belief and faith. belief:1. The mental act, condition, or habit of placing trust or confidence in another: My belief in you is as strong as ever. 2. Mental acceptance of and conviction in the truth, actuality, or validity of something: His explanation of what happened defies belief. 3. Something believed or accepted as true, especially a particular tenet or a body of tenets accepted by a group of persons.

(17 Jan '12, 19:07) white tiger

faith:1. Confident belief in the truth, value, or trustworthiness of a person, idea, or thing. 2. Belief that does not rest on logical proof or material evidence. See Synonyms at belief, trust. 3. Loyalty to a person or thing; allegiance: keeping faith with one's supporters. 4. often Faith Christianity The theological virtue defined as secure belief in God and a trusting acceptance of God's will. 5. The body of dogma of a religion: the Muslim faith. 6. A set of principles or beliefs.

(17 Jan '12, 19:07) white tiger

Hebrews 11:1-2, “1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. 2 For by it the men of old gained approval.” http://www.calvarychapelgb.com/Mark/Mark11p2.htm

(17 Jan '12, 19:15) white tiger

belief is of the mind and faith is from the heart.

(17 Jan '12, 19:20) white tiger

@ele: "to inject humor, not to insult...." I took no insult. My demeanor while typing to you is and has always been positive. As a matter of fact, my demeanor is quite literally 99% of the time positive, especially on the internet.

See? I'm not the only one who accidentally misunderstands context. ^_^ That is generally why I include such an absurd amount of smiley faces whilst typing. I'm not actually that cutesy, but I haven't found an easier way to imply that I am happy.

And your point is taken regarding drama. I'll keep it in mind and learn to be less vocal about those observations.

(17 Jan '12, 22:05) Snow

@ele: I think we got off on the wrong foot.. lol. I'm a very happy and positive person. Even when I'm talking about things that make me sad like ex gf's, its in a "man this sucks but I'm tryin to keep my chin up" kind of way not a "omg eff my life i want to die shoot me now" kind of way.

On the internet there is very little anyone could ever say or do to upset me. Even in real life in fact. And you've never been anything but a positive personality around me so I would never show you anything but positivity without being severely provoked first, well beyond what you are capable of I'm sure.

(17 Jan '12, 22:57) Snow

@Snow -- Were Good - send me a link for those emoticons or happy faces you are so fond of. I don't know the meaning of most of them. (You're the computer geek - you'll find it faster than me). I don't see you as a negative person - emotionally charged yes and that is postive energy, correct?

(17 Jan '12, 23:16) ele

Yes indeed. As for the smiley faces.. it's really very different according to who you talk to. Some of my asian friends post smilies with characters from their language sets that look way better than ours. Stuff I do: ^^ =) :) <-- Happy faces, of varying varities. ^^y <-- Happy face with peace sign!

That's about it. =P .. oh yea, <-- tongue out face. =D.. happy face.. guh.

(18 Jan '12, 01:19) Snow

you made me laugh again.... thank you...

(18 Jan '12, 01:31) ele
showing 2 of 42 show 40 more comments

Hi Snow,

Yes it is a way to acheive an altered state of mind but I wouldn't advise it as it can be dangerous if done too often. Sleep is esential for health and deprivation of sleep is never an answer to anything worthwhile.

If an altered state of mind is acheived this way it can cause and probably is nothing more than halucination due to deprivation of sleep which is nothing more than a waking dream and not anything one can call worthy but if you are with others when this is done it can implant dangerous comands into the subconscious if anyone speaks for your conscious mind is not fuly awake and on its guard.


answered 15 Jan '12, 15:55

Paulina%201's gravatar image

Paulina 1


totally agree paulina. if one is not awake in harmony and balence in truth he will lose him self. and yes the body need some rest. has for what he see when he is shifting between state is different input that he put is awareness on. and depending where he is he can catch all the input close to him also. so i would not recommend that. meditation and lucid dream are more beneficial.

(15 Jan '12, 17:33) white tiger

Perhaps this idea came from the Native American practice of using sleep-deprivation to induce hallucinations. Only trained shamen did this, and it was not done regularly. It is well-known that sleep deprivation causes the mind to hallucinate. Vision quests undertaken by young Native American men in order to become full members of the tribe also involve sleep-deprivation. It is thought that the young warrior will get a message from the spirit world about his future through the hallucinations from lack of sleep.

We need to sleep in order for the brain to function properly. Many studies have been done that prove this; in fact, one form of torture is to actually deprive people of sleep. This should demonstrate how nasty a practice it is to deprive oneself of sleep.

That being said, I can tell you an odd thing: when I am depressed, I can sometimes "snap" myself out of it by deliberately cutting my sleep short by about three hours. I do not know why it works, but it does for me. The effect only lasts for a day, but usually a day is all I need to reset my body-clock or whatever it is that goes on in my head.

Perhaps manic-depressives, who sleep either too much or too little, would know more about the effect of lack of sleep on creativity... There must be some credence to this- many writers and other artists have been known to be manic-depressive, and some do their best work while manic.

I do not claim to be an authority on this. I have just spoken what I already know from my experience.




answered 16 Jan '12, 19:26

Jaianniah's gravatar image



Yes, Jai, I tend to agree with you and it's NOT so odd - Researchers have known for many years that sleep deprivation can temporarily ease depression in SOME people; but NOT All and then the next day, the depression returns (as you said happens to you). There is much info on the web regarding this. There is also research that says being sleep deprived causes depression.

(16 Jan '12, 19:49) ele

Thanks! I actually am glad to hear that this has some kind of 'real' inspiration point beyond someone throwing out silly ideas. Very interesting! =)

(17 Jan '12, 01:07) Snow

A random point of curiosity. Another common practice of native Americans involved the use of hallucinogenic drugs for 'spirit quests'.

I personally have a great deal of respect for that culture [as do most people, especially the Hopi and Mayans] and all of their practices, and have heard a great deal of wisdom from shamans who claim to have been inspired by spirit quests.

So my question: Why do you differentiate between a hallucination influenced by a drug and a hallucination influenced by a lack of sleep? It is very obvious that both can have serious medical repercussions, but is that it?

(17 Jan '12, 05:37) Snow

This sounded so weird to me that I googled it, and turns out indeed that there have been studies on it. For me, on the other hand, sleep deprivation makes me feel overemotional at best, horribly anxious and depressed at worst. it's different for everyone, I guess.

(18 Jan '12, 06:36) cassiopeia

Yep! I experience similar results when I have trouble sleeping (not by choice). That is why I was so fascinated that someone who is capable of having a normal sleep schedule would voluntarily not exercise that privileged.

(18 Jan '12, 07:29) Snow
showing 2 of 5 show 3 more comments

Just for educational purposes I figured I would do a follow-up on this in case anyone was interested.

First, I have lots of sleep issues as it is, and through a bit of testing on this subject I discovered that they have a huge impact on my mood, general state of mind, and general physical / cognitive abilities. I had never noticed before, but I can actually attribute certain days where I would feel any combination of negative effects to bad sleeping habits (over the span of multiple days, even. assuming I maintained regular patterns) and 'good' days to sleeping well for a few nights in a row. Unfortunately controlling sleep habits can be difficult.

So, I tried purposely messing with my sleep patterns [not just staying up for long periods of time in one sitting, but also sleeping extremely small amounts or intentionally interrupting my sleep] to see what would happen, and my results were not what I expected at all. There was absolutely nothing positive I can think to report. In the 'bad' category I don't even know where to begin.

The most noteworthy symptom would be schizophrenia. In extreme circumstances I actually started to believe that there were organizations out to get me. And it was actually so deeply rooted that if someone were to tell me that what I was saying was crazy, I would not have believed it. I genuinely believed in my head that everything I was saying completely panned out with sound logic and reason.

Paranoia and delusions, mood swings, cognitive difficulty, motor skill impairment, etc. Obviously the first response when reading some of those things would be "well duh", but I'm noting them anyway to explain the severity. Completely irrational feelings without provocation (I didn't act on them because I figured out the mood swing bit very early in my experiment, but I could literally stand there looking at a friend who was doing nothing wrong and we were having a good time and start feeling the same kind of emotional response I would normally feel if someone were to provoke me severely. It was one of the most unsettling experiences I've ever felt, knowing in my head that I had zero reason to feel the way I did yet having to sit there and watch it happen anyway.)

It's also worth noting I didn't feel any increase in inspiration in any category whatsoever, in fact there was a decrease. None of the potential positive effects listed in the original posts seemed to manifest for me. I'm not saying that it isn't possible for other people (perhaps more trained than I) to get beneficial results, just that I literally experienced no good results that I observed.

And I've been told that not sleeping for long enough will just straight up kill you.. Definitely worth mentioning.

Just so I can earn the title of captain obvious- I've successfully confirmed: yes, sleep is important; and sleep problems can cause severe side effects, even over a short period of time.

What this experiment did do for me however, is make me very aware that I need to get my [unintentional] sleep problems resolved, because they have a very dramatic negative impact on me.

So for those of you out there with sleeping problems, I strongly suggest trying to address them. [Preferably without medication, whenever reasonably plausible.] You'd be amazed at what a huge impact it can have on you.

This answer is marked "community wiki".

answered 17 Feb '12, 19:32

Snow's gravatar image


edited 17 Feb '12, 22:32

@Snow Sweet, Sweet Snow, I don't know if I should throttle you or hug you. I'm sooooo glad you are ok & even happier to find out you stopped before you began hallucinating. I even told you LSD would be better & once again I'm NOT encouraging the use of any hallucinogenic to you or anyone else. I'm really sorry I wasn't able to get my point across. I wonder had I told you about my experience with sleep deprivation; if it would have changed your mind. I went so many days w/o sleep;

(17 Feb '12, 23:31) ele

sleep; I did start hallucinating off & on for days & came close to a total mental meltdown. Even worse; I thought what I saw was real for a very long time afterwards. Snow, if your thinking my sleep deprivation was drug related; not at all. I still suffer with chronic sleep issues & if I go too many days; like you; I'm an emotional wreck. Thanks for the vote; but I think your answer is the best & I hope it helps someone else. Again, I regret not telling you my story.

(17 Feb '12, 23:37) ele

@ele: "I'm really sorry I wasn't able to get my point across."

Don't be.

"I wonder had I told you about my experience with sleep deprivation; if it would have changed your mind."

Nope. ^_^

I am very stubborn. ;) I hoped that my experiments would help me with my own sleep issues, and they definitely did in revealing just what a severe effect they had on me.

But seriously, please don't regret not being able to convince me to not do something I wanted to do. Sometimes people need-

(17 Feb '12, 23:46) Snow

-to make their own mistakes and learn from them. That is something that I personally just recently have come to accept, because I have always been trying to steer my more party-oriented / wild friends towards better futures since I was a child. The thing is though, you can help people make decisions by providing input where it is welcome, but you can't try to force them on people.

You did everything you should have, you warned me, quite thoroughly. I acknowledged the severity of your warnings-

(17 Feb '12, 23:48) Snow

-and decided to do it anyway. And I'm very glad I did. Not only because now I can say "Hey, this is a really bad idea" in case anyone else decides they want to, but it made me learn a huge, HUGE amount about my psyche and so much more.

Really it was a great experience.

As Wade and I concluded in a conversation recently: It isn't "Success VS. Failure", it is "Success VS. Learning Experience". I learned a lot, I didn't get hurt permanently that I know of,-

(17 Feb '12, 23:50) Snow
  • and I was able to fix the damage I did do pretty easily.

I do appreciate your input, especially the part you edited out [because I understand your opinion on drugs to be very very negative and so it gave a very clear indication of your perception of the 'gravity' of this situation, which made me approach it with much more caution than I had initially intended, which probably saved me a lot of difficulties], so thank you very much and don't worry so much. =P

(17 Feb '12, 23:52) Snow

I did laugh at your bad humor. Actually I never label people as being stupid or do I think or express it. We all do stupid things & I really try hard not to judge. I'm going to make an exception - Snow, depriving yourself of sleep was not your brightest thought.

(18 Feb '12, 01:20) ele

All comments on my questions, my answers, or places I have commented myself or voluntarily subscribed to.

If by homeless you mean don't have anywhere to live or in any kind of inescapable situation, no. Just moving really. I think we've lost relativity to the topic at hand however and are now just chatting so we should probably take it elsewhere.

If you'd like to keep talking you can send me an email at the address on my profile and I can give you other methods of reaching me more directly. =)

(18 Feb '12, 02:11) Snow

@Snow - you were reading my mind. IQ is not for chatting. As much as I would love to keep talking to you; sorry, I really can't -- please don't take it personally. I value my privacy & want to protect my identity. We can delete all these silly comments..

(18 Feb '12, 02:32) ele

I understand the sentiment; as do I. This is why my public email is anonymous. If you ever end up obtaining an anonymous email of your own, you know how to reach me.=) ^^y [Of course if you'd like to know my real contact information I'd give it to you if you asked, btw. Just so you know if you ever get curious enough to want to know what I look like. =P There are few people on this site who I wouldn't oblige that request for. But strangers scare me. ^^]

I did my deleting, leaving the rest. =)

(18 Feb '12, 02:50) Snow

@Snow - sorry.. I had a client online & it took longer than I thought. Yes, some of us have to work & I've been doing so while chitchatting with you. Lucky though, my office is wherever I am. If you mean by anonymous; you mean it does not identify me by name - then yes, I have a few. Anonymous to a point is all & you're pretty tech savvy. I never use the email acct associated with IQ; that's why I asked those ?'s. Aren't you FB friends with people from IQ? & No, I'm not into FB.

(18 Feb '12, 04:18) ele

@ele: Regarding your 'other' comment: You define strangers differently than I do. ;)

(18 Feb '12, 14:42) Snow
showing 2 of 12 show 10 more comments

no but fast sleeping is ...... ( crickets ) :-) :-] :-} :-/ :-I :-{ :-{ :-(

love n light




answered 18 Feb '12, 15:48

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TReb Bor yit-NE

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