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A neurologist found Sherlock Holmes’s trick to get smarter

The famous detective from Baker Street had a habit that helped him to be more creative and brilliant, and you can copy it.

Sherlock Holmes was not just any detective. In Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s novels , Holmes is a master of disguise, has an unparalleled capacity for deduction, and manages to find the most creative answers to problems others cannot solve.

Sherlock Holmes is also a violin virtuoso and a brilliant man who can use a simple accent, a squeak of shoes or a bit of dust at the crime scene to track down the murderer (or any criminal) to get ahead of the crime. police and give your clients exactly what they need, a closed case.

But is that all just because of the way Conan Doyle wrote it? Apparently Holmes’s secret to being brilliant and keeping his creativity active is in his sleep patterns, or so a neurologist believes who found an important point in the detective’s novels that we can find on Baker Street in London .

In Holmes novels (which is inspired by a real character), bedtime is very important to Holmes and is something that is mentioned multiple times, and always tries to do it for a minimum of 8 hours. In the story of The Missing Three-Quarters, Holmes even tells Watson “Go to bed early tonight, Watson, because I anticipate that tomorrow may be a hectic day.”

Holmes goes to sleep at 10 at night and by 6:30 the next morning he is already working, and this has to do with a real practice that can help people to be more creative, more alert and have better performance throughout the day, as sleep deprivation can affect everything from the ability to pay attention to sexual desire.

“Only in an extreme situation, when Holmes faces a case that needs to be solved or the author at the end of one of his free books, both take time away from sleep. They lock themselves up for days when they hardly eat or sleep and when they finish they are exhausted. They need weeks of total rest to recover ”, explains the neurologist in charge of the sleep unit at the Clínic Àlex Iranzo hospital. “But recovery is possible because it is an exception: 8 or 9 hours are, on the other hand, the constant.”

The neurologist says in an article published in the Lancet Neurology that, after studying Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s novels about Holmes and a series of documents about the writer and his children (available from the British Library in London), he discovered that chronic insomnia Kafka’s suffering had a strong impact on his work and the importance of having a good night’s sleep when it comes to intelligence and creativity.

“For Holmes and Conan Doyle , the regularity of a sufficient sleep is a key element, ‘the best training before battle’, as he points out in other non-Holmesian works. An extraordinary mind cannot give up by depriving itself of sleep. And it is a phenomenon on the rise in the last 50 years. In 1985, 23% of the US population between the ages of 45 and 65 slept less than 7 hours a day; in 2004 it was 33%. But 15% sleep less than 6 hours. A lot of creativity and a lot of health are lost ”, warns the neurologist.

Was Conan Doyle correct? It looks like it is. According to the neurologist, sleeping less than 7 hours supposes a decrease in concentration, memory, and attention, produces greater irritability and anxiety, affects the emotional aspect, produces apathy, fatigue, and even a lower sexual desire, in addition to many other health problems that can be dangerous in the long term. In the case of Holmes (who has been played by great actors) , breaking his sleep schedule and getting up early always leaves him exhausted, in a worse mood, and even a little disoriented.

Iranzo explains that, if you usually sleep enough hours on a regular basis, it is possible that a sleepless night will not affect you too much, but he assures that afterwards “One is left lying, wrecked, physically and mentally exhausted. The biographies of Conan Doyle reflected this: after each episode of frenzied activity without sleep, he spent two weeks without being able to move and doing a rest cure ”.

Do you want to be smarter, more creative and always perform well? Then you have to do like S herlock Holmes and make sleep a priority.

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