A novel idea
Historia/ShutterstockLiterary historians note that classic author Charles Dickens was a reported insomniac, even as he crafted his timeless stories. But they also allege that he was quite superstitious in the way that he did sleep, insisting he must face north while he rested (and wrote) as he felt this had an impact on his creativity. Try these little changes today to sleep better tonight.
Four is enough
Neil Rasmus/ShutterstockAccording to Martha Stewart, she can get by on just four hours of sleep per night. She claims she is so busy tending to business and life, that's generally what she clocks. "It's an exhausting lifestyle, and I always say sleep can go. It's not important to me right now," she told Web MD. "I never stay in bed late—I can't! In my house, the first people arrive at about 6:30, and I have to be up well before that."
Gold medal guide
Erik Pendzich/ShutterstockStrenuous workouts and constant competitions mean Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps needs to make sure his sleep is not only plentiful, but solid. In an interview with 60 Minutes, he admitted he sleeps in a chamber filled with air that mimics sleeping at an altitude of between 8,500 and 9,000 feet to prepare for the 2012 Olympics. This reportedly makes his body produce an increased amount of red blood cells, delivering oxygen to his muscles. Phelps describes the setup as "a giant box." Now that's dedication.
Carl Timpone/ShutterstockTo keep her powerhouse voice in tip-top shape, Mariah Carey insists on, get this, 15 hours of sleep. She also likes to keep things steamy in her boudoir, but not in the way you might think. "Literally, I'll have 20 humidifiers around my bed," she said in a V magazine interview. "Basically, it's like sleeping in a steam room." Looking for an easier way to get more zzzs? Try these natural remedies for insomnia.
The write stuff
Chelsea Lauren/ShutterstockKelly Clarkson cannot go to sleep until she's released all of her creative juices in the form of songwriting. In an interview with Self, the mother of two says if an idea strikes as she's about to doze off penning new tunes has to happen right away. "That's why I have a hard time sleeping," she said. "A lot of those times are at night." Clarkson may be on to something—these 13 world-changing ideas came from dreams, literally!
AP/REX/ShutterstockRenowned author Stephen King is known for penning tales that may keep even his biggest fans up at night with their horror-filled pages, but when it comes to his own bedtime rituals, he's very specific. He needs his pillowcases to be pointed in a certain direction in order to drift off to dreamland. "I brush my teeth, I wash my hands. Why would anybody wash their hands before they go to bed? I don't know. And the pillows are supposed to be pointed a certain way," he said in the book Haunted Heart: The Life and Times of Stephen King. "The open side of the pillowcase is supposed to be pointed in toward the other side of the bed. I don't know why."
Steven Ferdman/ShutterstockAccording to The Telegraph, Tom Cruise is actually a pretty considerate snorer. The actor reportedly had a "snoring room" built in his home with soundproof walls in an effort to contain his loud nighttime breathing. The "snoratorium" was constructed while Cruise was married to Katie Holmes so they could both sleep better.
Underwood Archives/ShutterstockDespite being known as one of the greatest inventors in history, Thomas Edison didn't rely on very much sleep for his sharp thinking. According to SleepAdvisor, Edison actively avoided too much rest, regarding it as a waste of time (those of us experiencing our current sleep-deprived culture would likely disagree). He preferred a polyphasic sleep cycle which SleepAdvisor describes as a nap-oriented pattern meant to maximize awake time.
Evan Agostini/ShutterstockRapper Eminem, who has suffered from sleep issues in the past, reportedly puts aluminum foil over his windows, no matter where he is in the world, to help block out sunlight and help him get some shuteye. He also plays white noise while he rests to fully get himself in the sleep zone.
Dream before drive
Suzanne Cordeiro/ShutterstockTesla CEO Elon Musk has one hectic schedule, but as passionate as he is about his work, he also knows how important sleep is to his health. For this reason, he regularly logs six hours of sleep between 1 a.m. and 7 a.m. In cases where he feels compelled to be near business no matter what the time, he keeps a sleeping bag in a conference space adjacent to Tesla's production line.