Matthew Walker – neuroscientist part 3 - Deepstash

Matthew Walker – neuroscientist part 3

Walker concludes that sleep is vital to help heal emotional trauma by reflection in deep sleep and convert knowledge into wisdom through the associations formed between the emotional, memorial and abstract in REM sleep.

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Lucy Cooke is a zoologist and founder of Slothville. 

Lucy noted that sloths are evolutionary extraordinary in many ways: they are one of the only inverted quadrupeds, they poop only once a week, they are vegetarians which can digest a variety of plants and they have ridged furs which trap algae to help them camouflage. 

Their evolutionary advantage comes with their lack of speed = they are rarely noticed by predators which spot prey due to their movement.

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He conducted an experiment with two groups: 8-hour-sleepers vs all-nighters. 

He then studied the individuals brain patterns in an MRI scan as they tried to memorize and recall facts. The 8-hour-sleepers showed healthy, active brain patterns associated with learning whereas the all-nighters showed virtually no such signs.

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She also noted that when sloths poop, they travel down from the tree trunks to defecate on the ground – a huge risk.

 This, she believes is to leave scent trails for other sloths, helping them find and climb the right tree of a female who screams out in D# when in heat.

More than that, they have become entrenched in a culture which values a slower way of life.

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Since Mars has a slower rotation than Earth, one day (or Sol as it is known) is 40 minutes longer. 

This means the team must work with Martian time, syncing their watches to be slower by 40 minutes and separating themselves from their fellow earthlings.

Cox noted the profound separation she felt from her friends when working on Mars time, her and her fellow colleagues referred to themselves as Martians as they began to function on another rhythm.

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Nagin Cox has worked on all 3 Mars rovers to date. 

She recounts that once they are on Mars, they must make use of their time and work efficiently.

This requires the team of scientists and engineers to work with it, allowing it to gather information in the day and they recharge at night when the team receives the information, they must analyses it and then plan and creates instructions for the rover’s following day.

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She also observed the Uros people living on Lake Titicaca on floating islands made of the cattail reed.

They wove houses from this plant in under 3 days without the need for other resources.

 The resilience of these structures didn’t come from their physical strength but from their adaptability under the assumption they would decay and breakdown over time.

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Julia Watson is an architect studying indigenous low-tech designs.

She observed how the Kashi people overcame the problems presented with living in a region of monsoons and high average rainfall. The torrential flash-floods and rivers would often destroy any infrastructure so the people planted native trees/shrubbery which grew over 50 years and was woven into bridges. 

This long-term, low tech solution proved far more resilient than any design which fought against nature.

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Walker wrote the book “Why We Sleep” and is an advocate for at least 8 hours each night. 

He explains how a mixture of REM sleep and deep sleep can help humans consolidate learning and store memories.

The ratio between these two modes of sleep is extremely important yet cannot be controlled.

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Johnny Sun – Illustrator and writer

He wrote and illustrated a graphic novel about an alien left on planet Earth trying to find companionship in a time where he feels completely alone.

Johnny himself struggled with loneliness, comparing the feeling to a void. Like outer space, where no one answers. 

Similarly, the internet can feel like this, but as Johnny explained he used humour and online cartoon strips to articulate his feelings and soon he discovered that it formed a small community of other, lonely people who began to connet.

 He described loneliness as an “intrinsic human state” but that through social connection, one can alleviate these feelings of crushing despair.

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Motivation is limited

Nobody is ever motivated all the time. Life has a way of presenting us with obstacles and challenges that can really throw us for a loop.

So, if motivation is temporary this means you must have other resources in place that will help achieve the success you desire. 

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Set concrete goals

To become successful sooner, you first need a road map for your career. What do you want to achieve in your career?

Long term goals help you create a framework for your career. With them in mind, create smaller goals. Set the bar high to ensure you always have a source of motivation.

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