Wise Gurus

WWB Wise Guru Series: Discover Your Chronotype and Sleep Like a Baby. Q&A with Dr. Michael Breus, Sleep Doctor & Author of New Book ‘The Power of When’



WWB Wellness Wisdom Book Selection: The Power of When


Wise Guru & Author: Dr. Michael Breus


Author Profile: Michael J. Breus, Ph.D., is a Clinical Psychologist and both a Diplomate of the American Board of Sleep Medicine and a Fellow of The American Academy of Sleep Medicine. Dr. Breus has been featured on The Dr. Oz Show more than 30 times and writes regularly for The Huffington Post, The Dr. Oz Blog, and Psychology Today. He is the author of The Sleep Doctor’s Diet Plan and Beauty Sleep.








Lauroly Welcome: Thank you Dr. Breus for joining me here at World Wise Beauty. I am sure this is going to be one of the best read posts I’ve shared, because everyone seems to be chasing the elusive sound sleep these days. I found your introduction in the book to be very important, as it gives sleep the cultural and sociological context we need to understand. The fact is our lifestyles have drastically changed. You really present a case for understanding these culture shifts and it is clear that these advancements in our culture have affected our sleep rhythms. What I like about your book is you identify the sleep disruptions but also provide the solutions on a case by case bio-individual basis. You call this ‘chronobiology’. You explain a lot in your book, but let’s get started here with an overview of chronobiology. What does it mean and why does it matter? The title of your book ‘The Power of When’ is perfect because you show us ‘why’ sleep matters in all aspects of our day.


[dr-breusbox] Dr. Breus: Chronobiology is the study of Chrono-rhythms. This is an active area of science and research where we look at the genetic chronobiology of certain types of individuals and then use our learnings to improve their lives and better understand our own! When you have a genetic propensity, and you do not follow it, your life is not only unproductive, but you use energy, regularly, when it is un-necessary. Going against your biology, is not only inefficient, but also foolish. Why wouldn’t you want to take advantage of your perfect time to do things? It just makes sense. Sleep is FUNDAMENTAL to our entire biology, psychology, and communication. If you start reviewing your health at this type of basic level, you will gain an insight that you otherwise would miss. And by the way, people have been missing this for YEARS. I did not make all this up, this is research that has been publicly available, but people have not put it all together in a cogent program, that everyone can follow. The Power of The Power of When, is that it is sooooo simple, to understand and to do. [/su_note]



Lauroly Q-  I took all your tests and I seem to be a little of everything. Yet honestly I would say, if left to my own devices I would be a night owl. I don’t seem to be a lion, wolf or dolphin but certainly felt like a dolphin in stressful times and was a wolf as a teenager. Is there a continuum with chronotypes? Or is it fixed for life?


Dr. Breus: Yes, it is a continuum. We know that at certain ages we do live certain chronotypical lives. Teenagers are easy. They are mostly wolves. Remember when you were a teenager? You probably wanted to stay up late and sleep late. This is BIOLOGICALLY driven, it is not their fault. And guess what, it changes again when we get older. Personally I think it happens when our brains slow down on the production of melatonin. This will turn people into dolphins and lions as they age. Your chronorhythm seems to set at about age 20 and stays that way until age 55 or so.

Lauroly Q- Through your research, you have pinned down everything from the timing of sex, to practicing yoga, to having an important conversation with someone. It really is amazing and seems to make a lot of sense. It’s all about our rhythms. Is it ideally better to be a bear and in sync with the world?


Dr. Breus: Yes and No. Bears do have it the easiest, simply because as you noted society seems to favor their schedule, but they seem to also do a lot of things at the wrong time. Each Chronotype will get some big things out of the book, Lions will learn how to be more social in the evenings, Dolphins should have a schedule that makes them more productive, and Wolves will learn more about how to handle mornings. Is it better to be a Bear? I think most people have “Lion Envy” where they think they want to be something that they are not. Lions do not have it so great, trust me.

Lauroly Q- What is the one important sleep tip you would give to all the chronotypes?

Dr. Breus: Once you understand your sleep schedule it is best to stick to it. If you are a Lion during the week, be one on the weekends as well. I can’t stress this enough. While I know this seems simple, it cannot be more true. Consistency is the key to all of sleep and my program.

Lauroly Closing: Thank you for joining us Dr. Breus. It is amazing how much you have uncovered with your research. It gives us yet another prism in which to view our bodies as systems which need a lot of maintenance and care to operate and function optimally. Timing really is everything but I have to tell you…only the Lions love those early morning meetings!

Dr. Breus Closing: I can’t thank you enough for your insightful questions. Everyone can check out the free quiz at www.thepowerofwhen.com Unlock your Clock, and Unlock your potential!

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