Why We Sleep is the most recent book I finished. Since I am fully cramming here at the last minute, I figured I would write what was freshest in my mind. In doing that, I am contradicting everything I just learned about in the outstanding book. I think that we all know that sleep is important but we don’t necessarily know WHY sleep is important. Sure, it makes us less cranky and healthier but Matthew Walker and his team have spent years conducting studies and he writes about them, and others here. These are some highlights. Sleep boosts your immune system and your ability to recall information. Sleep affects brain development in children. Sleep helps regulate your weight and overall fitness. While all of these things seem obvious, this book talks about the studies that prove them. As I have always wanted to say at work when someone points out that I am just confirming “what they already know”, more accurately this book proves what we think we know and that difference is not subtle.
This book reminds me a little of Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman. I love that book and while this is not quite as thorough as TFS it is in that same vein of a well written book that summarizes scientific studies that help prove things that we collectively think we know. I think HWS is a little more approachable and an easier read but I think it will have long term effects on the way that I do certain things.