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Year in Review: Sleep

I wanted to track my sleep patterns over this year in order to try and turn my sleep clock ahead a bit. At some points in time I didn’t get enough sleep and it impacted my ability to work in the office. I needed to be less of a night owl and more of an early riser.

While I didn’t pay attention to making my data machine-readable for all my other personal datasets, my sleep log happened to be the lone exception. Life is so much better with machine readable data. As a data engineer I should know this. You can get a machine-readable dump of my sleep log here.

Turns out I had some difficulty plotting this data using Chart.js, and tried to resort to pandas and matplotlib. The difficulty is in making a plot with times on the Y-axis, and drawing data between two particular dates (e.g. 11PM from one day to 1PM to the next). So instead, I just made a Google Sheets chart and took a screenshot of it 😊

(please open in a new tab in order to see the image in full)

sleep log chart

So! What can we glean from the sleep log data?

  • There were a number of days where I got out of bed super late: These likely killed a lot of the momentum to build up good habits to wake up early. This is partially a result of bringing a phone to bed and partially a result for hating whatever I needed to deal with in the day. I need to find a better way to record sleep information than my phone, which is highly addicting.

  • I am pretty far off from my goal of waking up earlier, but there was some degree of improvement later in the year: I want to wake up at around 6AM and devote the best hours of the day towards whatever I need to get done, as opposed to what other people want me to get done. I’m about as close to falling asleep at 6AM as I am waking up at 6AM. But the small amount of drift towards a sane sleep schedule around November may mean there are reasons for optimism starting off for 2019 🎉

  • Overall, the times have been fairly consistent: Not in small part due to me having to hold down a job, and having to arrive on time-ish for that job. If I didn’t have that, the other factors may skew or end this habit. I do want to ensure my sleep patterns are less dependent on external factors going forward, though. This is made more difficult by the fact that habits are hard to break.