Apparently I'm a Bear… which means I'm part of 50% of the US Population whose bio-clock rises and sets with the sun.
A friend recently told me to visit this website and take a short and no-cost quiz that would identify me into one of 4 “chronotypes” named after animals. Different than most of the quizzes I see floating around social media, there is actually some legitimate value to knowing ones chronotype and understanding how to optimize one's schedule to be more productive and happy.
The quiz was created by Dr. Michael Breus, PhD. It correlates with a book he has recently published titled, “The Power of When” which I finished reading a few days ago. At the end of the quiz Dr Breus presents a short video explaining more about your chronotype (Bear, Lion, Wolf, or Dophin) and then of course tells you how important it is that you buy his book so you can understand WHEN you should do things.
It is actually a little crazy to consider that with all the business and self-help books I've consumed there is a ton of information about WHAT to do and HOW to do it but as Breus points out there isn't really anything out there about WHEN to do it.
WHEN TO DO WHAT?
Everything. When to eat, write, be creative, be funny, take medicine, exercise, ask for a raise, sleep, nap, play, etc. The book doesn't suggest any chronotype is better than any other but the purpose according to the author is to optimize WHEN you do things to best fit in rhythm with your own biology. Biology is the best word because, according to Breus, your chronotype is in your DNA and is heretic.
The book is more or less broken down like this:
- The Quiz for people who like math, writing with a pencil or are otherwise unable to operate a computer (Point: do the quiz online and skip this part of the book)
- Chapters specific to each of the four chronotypes with more info about their bio-clock and an ideal schedule.
- Chapters about specific activities and when to do them like: Sleep, Work, Sex, Play, Eat, Exercise, Be Creative, Be Happy, Be Flexible, Be Agreeable, etc.
There are also some nice parts of the book that are about interacting between people. So for example if a wolf is married to a lion; when should them have constructive discussions, have sex, and avoid each other completely?
Ok, so you get the gist of the book…. but what are my own thoughts?
I Dig It. I give this book 4 out of 5 stars because the author doesn't babble… short and easy to consume chapters. The content is valuable and immediately applicable… no finishing the book and saying to yourself… huh… interesting but what do I do with this info.
You might be tempted to skip the chapters that you don't think apply to you. Avoid this temptation because understanding other chronotypes will be immensely helpful in life and even though I don't consistently take any medication I still learned some things in that chapter that may be valuable to me later in life.
My wonderful wife is a dolphin. Reading about dolphins gave me renewed respect and understanding for her. Life is always better when you understand the WHY behind things and this book was a journey of discovery not only in understanding myself but also my wife and others in my life. In total I've probably “forced” about 30 people around me to take this quiz so far including all immediate family members, all my employees and major business partners, etc.
The book is available in audio and I listened to it in it's entirety however I also purchased a physical copy because there are a lot of charts and other info that the audio book constantly calls out with “visit the website for the PDF download with this chart.”
When Should You Take the Quiz and Read this Book?
As soon as you finish the quiz comment below and tell us what you are and what if anything in the video (free video after the quiz) resonated with you!