This is an article I found interesting, it was written by Brenda Skidmore
Sleep investigators have discovered that, despite our apparent lack of physical inactivity and mental alertness, our brain remains rather active during sleep. Our brain seems to need, and use, this down-time to mainly allow itself the rest it needs to be able to fully process recent pieces of new information that it took in during our latest wake cycle.
Sleeping helps us to strengthen our newly formed memories by copying, filing, and saving only the new pieces of information that will, eventually, become the most pertinent at solving our current dilemmas. The brain also needs time to temporarily shut down, by blocking out the constant influx of incoming stimuli. This helps make our most recently formed memories easier to recall when we want, and makes them more resistant to long-term interference
by the flood of all other information that the brain will take in during its next, and subsequent, conscious alert phases.
If you find this news about sleep rather intriguing, then consider that up until the mid-1950's most researchers, who were studying this field of interest, thought that the brain remained, largely, inactive while we slept. By 1994, our understanding of brain activity under went a complete reversal in this way of thinking.
By 2006, sleep was shown to have more than a short-term performance boost on memory recall. Sleep appears to embed the memory enough to make it more resilient to interference from new information we take in the next day.
Nature really did intend for the brain to take in all of its new information during the light of day, and process it all during the darkness.
In a culture of people, who seem to place a high value on intelligence, creativeness, individuality, and excellence, you would think some of us would learn how to use our time a little more wisely. Maybe, giving yourself the gift of greatness is in little more than just 'sleeping on it'.
Hope you enjoyed it,