Just imagine how much more we could get done if we didn’t need to sleep, ever.

I’m one of those people that needs my 8 hours sleep, as I’ve mentioned before. If I don’t get my full allocation during the week, then I really need to recoup it at the weekend if at all possible.

I consider myself fairly active for the 16 hours a day that I’m awake, and I often imagine how much more I could get done if I only needed, say, 4 hours sleep a night. There have been plenty of well-known people in history who operated extremely well, with no apparent side effects, on a fraction of the daily recommended amount, but I’m not one of them, either on the famous front or the sleep minimisation front.

But if we didn’t sleep at all, with no downside, we would effectively reach 24/7 productivity. An extra 50% over what I currently get, which sounds pretty attractive, at least when you look at the pure numbers.

I’m not talking about not being able to sleep for long periods, something called Fatal Familial Insomnia, which sounds as bad as anything could be for a person. I’m really talking about not needing to sleep.

On reflection, though, and on balance, I spend about two-thirds of the week working, and the rest on rest and relaxation, so maybe doing the same on a typical day is about right too.