Length: 538 words (1.5 double-spaced pages)
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Researchers have studied the relationship between sleep habits and stress, personality and stress coping, and personality and sleep habits. One factor that has been widely overlooked is the relationship between sleep habits and personality types. The purpose of this study is to examine a relationship between personality types and sleep habits.
Evidence also shows that there is a relationship between personality and sleep. A study conducted by the director of the Sleep Assessment and Advisory Service at the University of Surrey in England, Chris Idzikowski, proclaimed that one’s sleep position is related to personality. Individuals of different personality types were observed and catorgized as having one of six common sleep positions. The results showed that individuals who slept in the fetal position were shy and sensitive; flat on the back with arms down were quiet and reserved; on the side with arms and legs outstretched were suspicious; on the side with legs outstretched and arms down were social and easy going; flat on the stomach with hands at the side of the head were brash and gregarious; and on the back with arms and legs outstretched were unassuming and good listeners. (Idzikowski, 2003)
Evidence shows that there is a relationship between the way individuals cope with stress and their sleep habits. Dr. Avi Sadeh conducted a study on students between the ages of 22 and 32 years, where the sleep patterns of the individuals were monitored by actigraphs and daily logs during low-stress and high-stress periods. The low-stress periods were those of regular academic schedules, while the high-stress periods were when the students were applying to graduate schools. Finding those "who tended to focus on their emotions and anxiety during the high-stress period were more likely to shorten their sleep, while those who tended to ignore emotions and focus on tasks extended their sleep and shut themselves off from stress." (Sadeh, 2004) .
Another study examined the effects of personality on sleep patterns under stressors. Subjects between the ages of 21-33 years were monitored for three nights by polygraph recordings of their sleep. The individuals were broken into two separate groups based in psychological tests. The first group used active stress coping mechanisms, causing very little change in their sleeping patterns. The second group used non-adaptive coping mechanisms, causing their sleep structures to change significantly in response to stress. The study showed that individuals of different personalities have different sleep patterns due to the way the cope with stress.
(Levin, Strygin, Korabel’nikova, 2002)
Another study placed 18 males into two groups, one composed of irregular sleepers and the other composed of individuals who slept habitually from 12-8:00AM (the control group.) The California Psychological Inventory (CPI) and the Cornell Medical Index (CMI) were administered to each group. On the CPI scales the control group scored higher on Dominance, Sociability, Self-acceptance, Self-control, Achievement via conformance, and Intellectual efficiency; but lower on Flexibility. It was determined that normal or irregular sleep patterns are dependent on the psychological factors that distinguished the groups. (Hawkins, 1979.)
Studies show there is a relationship between sleep and stress, personality and stress, and personality and sleep, this study hypothesizes that there will be a relationship between sleep and personality types.