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Michael Breus’ ‘The Power of When’

You know you’re supposed to eat right, exercise every day, and sleep 8 hours each night. You might even have a routine down from when the alarm goes off to when your head hits the pillow. But did you know there’s actually a perfect time to do each thing every day? That’s the thesis of “The Power of When,” a new time-management book by Dr. Michael Breus.

Breus, a clinical psychologist who specializes in sleep disorders, realized that for some of his patients the time they went to sleep was actually more important than the amount of sleep they got. By changing when they crashed, they changed how effective that sleep was. “I wondered, ‘What else could this work for?’” Breus says. That wonder led him to look into what else could be timed for maximum efficiency. And the more he researched, the more he discovered.

“Contrary to what you might have heard, there is a perfect time to do everything,” Breus writes. From that cup of coffee and your daily workout to when you watch TV, there’s a time for every activity in your day. And by a “perfect time,” Dr. Breus means a perfect time for you. Much of this book is dedicated to helping you learn your own habits and preferences, so you can customize your perfect time routine to what will work in your own life.

Breus is a scientist first, and his findings are based on hard evidence. His advice on when to wake up, for example, involves the use of a sleep monitor and is based on our internal biological clocks — which were fueled for thousands of years by when the sun came up. Humans were slowly brought into stage 1 or 2 sleep by the gentle increase of light. That method is less taxing on our systems and leaves us feeling more awake when we rise.

This book covers everything, from learning something new or drinking coffee to meditating or using the restroom. Whether you want to read a book at the optimum time, or change your sleep schedule, “The Power of When” is a must-read.