I read somewhere that if you wanted to have a good night sleep, you should rest your brain about two hours before going to bed. The reason is that it usually takes quite some time, about 2 hours, for your brain to change from an active/excited state to a resting state essential for a good sleep. I have learned it in the past week.
I have been working hard on a new research result, which required me to do the math, code the implementation and examples in Matlab, and write notes quite a lot. I worked, worked and worked, often until 11pm or midnight everyday, and I couldn’t go to sleep before 2am, even 3am. What worse was that even when I went to bed, my brain kept working and I kept thinking about the problem/idea. The consequence? I slept late, got up late, and still felt very tired the next day (typical of sleep deprivation). It was very bad since I was too tired to work efficiently.
So, I think I should set a new rule for myself:
Unless absolutely necessary, I will stop working and let my brain rest after 9pm at the latest.
By absolutely necessary I mean the situation of a very near deadline (either an explicit deadline or an implicit deadline).