Learn how to Discover Your Sleep Chronotype to Sleep And Reside Higher

What if I informed you that in the event you knew a specific secret, you’ll effortlessly and simply sleep deeper, wake extra refreshed, and have extra vitality to your day by day actions naturally?

Effectively, the key is to know your sleep chronotype.

As Australia’s main sleep skilled, I’ve written a guide on this actual subject – Bear, Lion Or Wolf: How Understanding Your Sleep Sort Might Change Your Life. It could be greater than a pleasure to allow you to in on the low-down of your chronotype, so you’ll be able to sleep, really feel and reside higher.

What Is a Sleep Chronotype?

Sleep chronotypes, or your chronotype, although it sounds complicated, is definitely quite simple. It’s a categorisation system to your circadian rhythm, which is both early, mid or late:

  • These with an early circadian part choose to wake and sleep early (Lions)
  • These with a mid part wish to wake and sleep neither early nor late (Bears)
  • These with a late part, as you’ve got in all probability already guessed, wish to wake and sleep late (Wolves)

That mentioned, your sleep chronotype really identifies way more than your typical sleep-wake preferences. Reasonably, it pinpoints durations of peak psychological and bodily productiveness; your sleep wants, typical sleep saboteurs, ultimate sleep methods and even character traits.

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Therefore, beneath is a a extra detailed define of the three chronotypes, as outlined from my guide:


  • Ideally suited sleep time: earliest – 10pm and 6am
  • Sleep wants: lowest – 7 hours often is adequate
  • Peak productiveness interval: earliest – 8am till 12pm
  • Best sleep problem: going to mattress early sufficient and nervousness, which ends up in mild, un-refreshing sleep
  • Best sleep energy: your drive to function at 100% in work and play – often leading to practices which by the way enhance sleep, resembling constant train and a nutritious diet.
  • Key character traits: management, proactivity, positivity, well being oriented and routine based mostly
  • Portion of inhabitants: 25%


  • Ideally suited sleep time: 10.30pm and 7am
  • Sleep wants: highest – 8-9 hours of deep, top quality sleep
  • Peak productiveness interval: 10am till 2pm
  • Best sleep problem: switching off from screens within the night
  • Best sleep energy: as you hate to let others down, you probably have a coach or accountability associate working with you in your sleep objectives, you’ll ship
  • Key character traits: dependable, humble, right down to earth, hardworking, operates greatest in a partnership or group
  • Portion of inhabitants: 50%


  • Ideally suited sleep time: newest – 12am and 8am (if attainable)
  • Sleep wants: medium – 7-9 hours, nevertheless that is usually not achieved as a consequence of their late sleep time
  • Peak productiveness interval: newest – afternoon if crucial, nevertheless, most wolves do their greatest work after darkish, as in between 7-11pm.
  • Best sleep problem: your inherent circadian delay, which suggests you might be merely not drained within the night, and as an alternative, desperate to socialize, which regularly leaves you sleep disadvantaged and sleeping within the subsequent morning.
  • Best sleep energy: adaptability for night work – it’s whenever you thrive, in any case! Comparatively, Bears and Lions discover this close to inconceivable.
  • Key character traits: distinctive, artistic, threat taking, fun-loving, social
  • Portion of inhabitants: 25%

How Figuring out Your Sleep Chronotype Helps You Sleep And Reside Higher

Larger high quality sleep equates to a better high quality expertise of life – interval.

Recall the final time you woke feeling refreshed, rejuvenated and able to face the day. Now think about having the ability to recreate this expertise, on demand, with a particular set of behaviors. That’s precisely what can, and can occur, through the use of this recommendation accordingly.

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Listed here are additionally a number of methods how understanding your sleep chronotype helps you sleep higher:

1. when and the way lengthy it’s best to sleep every night time

After figuring out your sleep chronotype, ideally, you’ll cater your sleep time and sleep size accordingly. As this timeframe coincides to your peak melatonin ranges – the grasp hormone that can assist you fall and keep asleep – your sleep is probably going to enhance – suppose falling asleep quicker and waking much less via the night time.

2. Decreased bedtime nervousness – much less laying awake in mattress staring on the ceiling

Bedtime nervousness is the expertise of going to mattress, laying awake and being unable to sleep – which may happen by going to mattress at a time misaligned to your circadian desire, when your melatonin ranges are too low. Because of this, although it’s usually touted that 10pm is a perfect bedtime, this solely applies to Lions. Reasonably, Bears and Wolves ought to go to mattress a contact later, as this respects your melatonin peak, and can scale back the danger of bedtime nervousness.

3. You may take inventory of your commonplace sleep saboteurs – earlier than they result in a sleepless nights

Whereas there are basic guidelines for wholesome sleep, resembling avoiding screens within the hour earlier than mattress, and solely consuming caffeine earlier than 12pm, every chronotype has sleep saboteurs which are extra more likely to happen for them, in comparison with others.

For instance, Lions generally tend to develop into anxious – and thus must be notably proactive of their anti-anxiety practices, resembling meditation and train.

Alternatively, Bears generally tend to loaf somewhat too lengthy on the sofa within the night – often in entrance of the TV.

Lastly, Wolves, who’ve probably the most vitality within the night and the least within the morning, must keep away from sleeping in – although it’s tempting, it solely accentuates your circadian part delay and makes it tougher so that you can sleep at an acceptable time that night time.

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Whereas sure, these challenges current to all of us, no matter chronotype, it’s vital to notice that your sleep sort does predict ones which are most related to you – so that you could be conscious and take inventory, earlier than they take inventory of you.

Learn how to Discover Your Chronotype

For probably the most dependable reply, take a look at my bio for the hyperlink to the chronotype quiz obtainable on my web site, which mirrors the quiz in my guide. Nevertheless, in the event you’d wish to have an perception now whilst you’re studying this text (I perceive, time is treasured), then reply these 5 key questions.

In comparison with others, my most popular bedtime is:

  • A – earlier
  • B – generally earlier, generally later
  • C – later
  1. How alert am I within the first hour upon waking?
  • A – very – it’s after I do my greatest work
  • B – considerably alert, sufficient to know I want a espresso, stat!
  • C – not alert in any respect, and will simply return to sleep
  1. When is my peak productiveness?
  • A – earlier than lunch
  • B – between 10 and a couple of
  • C – within the night
  1. If I had a alternative, when would I rise up?
  • A – round 6am
  • B – 7 or 8am
  • C – after 8am

The extra A’s you’ve got, the extra you’re a lionThe extra B’s, the extra you’re a bear.The extra C’s, the extra you’re a wolf.

Chronotype FAQs

1. Can I’ve two sleep chronotypes?

Sure – hybrids do exist, as do those that fall on the cusp of two – e.g. those that are near the minimize off for Lions and Bears, for instance.

Equally, it’s vital to know that chronotypes spotlight our innate preferences – which doesn’t all the time eventuate in actuality.

Third, we solely exhibit 80% of our chronotype traits – so it’s attainable that you’ll self-identify with the traits of one other sleep sort. Therefore, such concerns must be made when assessing the validity of your chronotype.

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2. The place is the dolphin chronotype?

The dolphin chronotype has been recognized by fellow main sleep skilled Dr Michael Breus based mostly on his scientific observe with insomniac sufferers – that means they’ve a haphazard sleep schedule, sometimes wrestle to sleep and endure consequential results – despair, nervousness, burnout, compromised cognitive capability and reminiscence loss.

My chronotype classes, alternatively, stem from the MEQ scale, a broadly used psychometric check which assimilates people into teams based mostly on their preferences for morning and night.

3. What determines my chronotype?

A 2017 examine by College of Michigan Medical Faculty discovered 50% of your sleep character is underpinned by genetics, such because the PER1, 2 and three genes and the (aptly named) CLOCK genes. The opposite 50% of your chronotype is dictated by endogenous (exterior) influences, resembling blue mild, stress, weight-reduction plan and life-style.

4. What’s the distinction between my Circadian rhythm and chronotype?

Your circadian rhythm is any 24 hour inner clock – along with your sleep-wake clock being probably the most generally mentioned. Your chronotype alternatively is the categorisation system of your sleep-wake circadian clock, grouped into Bears, Lions and Wolves.

Sleep Higher with Chronotype Particular Sleep Methods

From morning and bedtime routine, via to weight-reduction plan and dietary supplements (and extra!); every chronotype has particular suggestions that serve them greatest. Conscious to not overwhelm you, listed below are three items of recommendation for every chronotype that you would be able to – and will – implement ASAP.


1. Keep away from caffeine till 10.30am or 11am

it may in any other case overstimulate you and amplify nervousness. Although it might be typical for you now, downscaling your caffeine consumption gently – first shifting from espresso to black tea, then to inexperienced tea, over the course of per week – will produce appreciable variations upon your nervousness ranges.

Despite the fact that black and inexperienced tea include caffeine, the latter comprises solely a 3rd of that of espresso, and likewise, in contrast to espresso, offers l-theanine, a compound to activate the parasympathetic nervous system, so you are feeling extra relaxed.

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2. Have an early dinner – 6pm is right

With a purpose to go to sleep with ease at your ultimate bedtime (which is 10pm), you want your digestion to be at relaxation for a number of hours beforehand, a minimum of. As digestion is a thermogenic course of – heats the core physique temperature – this reduces the manufacturing of melatonin, as this depends on a cool core physique temperature to be produced. Therefore, in the event you eat late, tucking in for an early night time will probably be difficult – to say the least.

3. Put on ear plugs to mattress

Because it’s more likely to be sooner than 75% of the inhabitants (Bears and Wolves collectively), their noise could disturb your sleep. A 2019 examine by the College of Basel in Switzerland recognized that for each ten-decibel improve in noise, sleep onset was delayed by 5.6 minutes and sleep effectivity decreased by 3 per cent – which in context, means visitors noise can improve sleep latency by a whopping 45 minutes.


1. Respect your excessive sleep wants

Okay so, Lions and Wolves could possibly comfortably have 7 hours of sleep, however that’s not you. You, my Bear good friend, want a stable 8 hours – at a minimal. Additionally word that is 8 hours of top of the range sleep – instigated by an hour of tech free time earlier than mattress, utilizing blue mild blocking glasses (see subsequent level) and a night bathe.

2. Put on 100% blue mild blocking glasses a minimum of 2.5 hours earlier than mattress

Though your optimum bedtime is 10.30pm, proper now, it’s possible that this doesn’t occur as a result of plain and easy, you’re not drained. Whereas that is legitimate, it’s equally legitimate to recognise that blue mild suppresses melatonin, the hormone to advertise these actual emotions. Therefore, to dam it out with 100% blue mild blocking glasses will assist you to go to sleep that little bit earlier, and get the sleep you so desperately want. Reflectively, a 2020 examine discovered these carrying blue mild glasses fell asleep 79% quicker than these carrying placebo glasses.

3. Have an accountability associate to your pre-sleep routines

Characteristically, bears carry out greatest in a group – so use this information to your benefit. Reasonably than committing your 10.30pm bedtime (see above) to your self, decide to an accountability associate – analysis by the American Academy of Coaching and Improvement has discovered that you’re 65% extra more likely to obtain your goal by doing so. And, you probably have a scheduled examine in with this AP, this chance will increase to 95%.


1. Have a minimum of an hour of ‘tech free time’ earlier than mattress

With an addictive character, excessive night vitality ranges, and a bent to take dangers, switching off out of your favourite present or recreation is tougher for you than it’s for others – cue such sleep saboteurs derailing your sleep wants. And although it appears marginal, know {that a} 2012 examine discovered these utilizing a telephone earlier than mattress have been 48% extra more likely to take longer than an hour to go to sleep, and 35% extra more likely to lose greater than 2 hours of sleep.

2. Don’t sleep in – as an alternative, take a nap in keeping with my Good Nap Plan

Although you’re in all probability sleep disadvantaged from one other late night time, sleeping in shouldn’t be how I counsel you repay your sleep debt. In the event you do, you’ll solely perpetuate your circadian delay – which not solely leaves you awake at bedtime, but in addition, exhausted within the morning. As a substitute, take a nap following the principles of my Good Nap Plan:

  • a) maintain it quick – lower than half-hour
  • b) maintain it darkish – put on a watch masks
  • c) maintain it early, ending the nap no later than 3.30pm.

3. Expose your self to 40 minutes of pure daylight upon waking

For you, of all chronotypes, mornings are the toughest – and on condition that sleepiness hormone melatonin is increased for you than your Bear and Lion counterparts, it’s completely cheap. Nevertheless, as famous above, sleeping in shouldn’t be suggested, and as you’ll be able to assume, neither is 2 or 3 double espressos.

Thus, to stimulate the physique and scale back your melatonin ranges naturally, leverage our main zeitgeber – mild. Particularly, 40 minutes of pure daylight, within the hour upon waking when the circadian rhythm is probably the most delicate to mild, is right, and can considerably lower morning fatigue.

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Closing Ideas

Data alone shouldn’t be energy – utilized information is energy. Therefore, Bears, Lion and Wolves alike, please empower your self to create tangible outcomes by taking motion. In doing so, you’ll be able to see the outcomes you really need: sleeping longer, deeper and waking extra refreshed – on demand.

Featured photograph credit score: Tânia Mousinho via unsplash.com