Facebook is Making You Unhappy and Stressed

Study Finds Quitting Facebook Makes You Happier and Less Stressed definitely fits my already negative perception of Facebook:

Researchers at the Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen (yep, that does exist)… took a group of 1,095 Facebook users and split them into two groups. The first group were allowed to continue using the social network on a daily basis, while the other group were forced to go completely cold turkey, staying off the site for the duration of the experiment.

The results were incredibly revealing – after just 7 days 88% of the group that left Facebook said they felt “happy” as opposed to 81% in the group still using the site. They also felt less angry, less lonely, less depressed, more decisive, more enthusiastic, and enjoyed their lives more. Ditching Facebook also appeared to reduce stress levels by as much as 55%.

When I started writing regularly on my blog, I decided to resurrect my years-dormant Facebook account as a publicizing channel. I promised myself that I would stop doing so if I found myself engaging on Facebook in anything more than a superficial manner. Good call. Via Daring Fireball.

Starting Polyphasic Sleep

We don’t actually need 8 hours of sleep per night, say polyphasic sleepers. I stumbled on Dustin Curtis’ Sleep article, where he introduces the concept of polyphasic sleep and why you might want to try it. Read the article if this sounds weird to you.

The immediate appeal is more hours in the day. The Everyman 2-nap cycle, which I’m starting today, reduces my sleep needs from 8 hours per night to 5.2 hours per day. 2.8 hours of time per day to do I want to do. That’s almost 20 found hours per week. For me, it hits the sweet spot of big gains in waking hours without seeming unattainable.

The adjustment period is supposed to suck, meaning I’m going to want to quit. Which is why I’m going to keep a sleep log on this site. I didn’t want to gum up the works with a daily sleep log, so I created a specific sleep log section where I’ll log my progress. I’ll probably post weekly summaries on the main site for those who want smaller doses of my experiment.

Pearls Before Breakfast

Article: Pearls Before Breakfast – washingtonpost.com

A journalist at the Washington Post had a great idea: have Joshua Bell, one of the world’s premier violinists (and his $3.5 million Stradivarius violin) play in a busy, downtown subway station during morning rush hour and see if anyone notices. If you want to find out from the article, stop reading this now and go read the article. Otherwise, here’s the answer: hardly anyone stopped to listen, sadly. This article uses this for some pretty in-depth ruminations on the current human condition. This quote was particularly poignant:

If we can’t take the time out of our lives to stay a moment and listen to one of the best musicians on Earth play some of the best music ever written; if the surge of modern life so overpowers us that we are deaf and blind to something like that — then what else are we missing?

Go and read the article. (The link’s up top.) Good, thought-provoking stuff. There’s some video too.