All of talelore's Comments + Replies

The Best Software For Every Need

Software: emacs

Need: Code editor (and personal information management system, and the only good git ui, and an email client, and...)

Other programs I've tried: Sublime Text, Atom, VsCode, vim

Why emacs is the best: Emacs can be whatever you want it to be. It can do everything and anything, all in one unified space where all your keybindings work, all your plugins work, etc. There is literally nothing you can't change about it, and people have created many "modes" for it that do a lot of things. In particular, org-mode renders all of those todo apps pointless... (read more)

5Hans R10d+1 for doom emacs. I'm an emacs novice and doom makes it palatable to learn - not easy, but it more clearly showcases the power of emacs.
How to Sleep Better

There is, in fact, a sedative level, and higher doses aren't less effective, they just induce more side effects, from what I understand. I tried every dose under the sun, including tiny ones. The effect was always weak at best.

2ChristianKl2moScott [https://slatestarcodex.com/2018/07/10/melatonin-much-more-than-you-wanted-to-know/] does write "A meta-analysis of dose-response relationships concurred, finding a plateau effect around 0.3 mg, with doses after that having no more efficacy, but worse side effects" but that doesn't mean that higher doses keep their efficiency. His article for example goes on to say "And Pires et al studying 22-24 year olds found that 0.3 mg worked better than 1.0." Which is likely
2ChristianKl2moWhere did you get the idea that there's a sedative level for melatonin?
A Contamination Theory of the Obesity Epidemic

I'd wonder about the effect of atmospheric pollutants. Altitude would clearly also have an effect if obesity was being caused by pollutants in the air.

How to Sleep Better

The effect size of melatonin use is usually pretty small. I think most studies say it shifts your cycle by 10-20 minutes. As I tended to go to bed an hour or two later every night, this was not enough. 

As for light therapy, it's not strange that it would have a different effect. Light stimulates a neural pathway going straight to your suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), which is the core circadian clock in your brain. (Melatonin is not involved in this, though melatonin is affected downstream.) Melatonin, on the other hand, is released by the pineal gland and is used to regulate the SCN (among other things), but it's not involved directly in the core timing mechanisms of the SCN.

1deepthoughtlife2moMelatonin actually causes a shift much larger than ten to twenty minutes -when taken early. Melatonin taken in the morning causes a large shift to delay the cycle (this can cause a shift of several hours). Melatonin taken after several hours hastens the cycle, also by hours. If this weren't the case, it would be useless as I currently use it. The ten to twenty minutes is as a sedative, when taken twenty minutes before bedtime. There are, of course, a number of pathways affecting sleep timing, including the uninformatively named System X that just tries to keep track of time by dead reckoning. I believe, perhaps wrongly, that the SCN's sleep related functions are mostly directly by melatonin; melatonin reduces the firing rates of the parts of the SCN that increase in firing rate in the presence of light (according to Wikipedia). This is the core timing mechanism of how light affects the SCN, isn't it? Edit: Looking at it again, the relevant part of the SCN article ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suprachiasmatic_nucleus )(in the electrophysiology section) does not have direct citations, but I'll assume it's correct unless this activity of melatonin is directly disputed. Edited again: An edit changed the structure of what I was saying, making for a strange sentence I don't endorse.
How to Sleep Better

I should note that my sleep issues are completely under control now, primarily due to the light therapy, as well as making sure I wake up at the same time every day, even on weekends. I now sleep like a normal, healthy person.

For a long time, especially when I was living in a dim basement, I had bouts of non-24 hour sleep-wake rhythm and I even had periods of irregular sleep-wake rhythm, which was a nightmare. So the light therapy etc. has taken me a long way. Fixing my sleep also played a large role in fixing my depression (and vice versa), since the como... (read more)

2ChristianKl2moThere's no sedative level and most melatonin products have doses that are too high to be clinically effective. What was the lowest dose you took?
1deepthoughtlife2moHonestly, it's a little strange that light therapy would help and melatonin not (since light therapy shifts circadian rhythms via [probably] lowering your melatonin levels in the morning). It's good you have your sleep issues under control.
How to Sleep Better

Based on my experience with circadian rhythm issues (delayed sleep phase syndrome etc.):

- Turning off the blue light in your devices in the evening is probably less impactful than lowering the brightness of your devices in the first place. Do both, but don't expect a blue light filter to work if the device is still blasting your eyeballs.

- Many indoor environments are underilluminated. Your bedroom is probably 100x times darker than the sun. That's not an exaggeration -- we just don't notice because we perceive light on a curve. Get much brighter lights. G... (read more)

1deepthoughtlife2moA thought: if you required large doses of melatonin for use as a sedative, maybe you simply needed to use a larger dose than you tried for circadian shifting as well, or longer before bedtime [I would suggest the latter first]. Melatonin definitely shouldn't have no effect unless something is particularly wrong [perhaps a bad batch, anxiety, or a physical problem]. (It will change your circadian rhythm, but that is only one aspect of whether you actually sleep.) I have noticed no tolerance effects whatsoever when used as a circadian shifter, though there were some when used as a sedative. I personally find melatonin extremely useful, taking a significant dose four to six hours before I plan to sleep. (My body otherwise thinks days are about 28-30 hours long.) By the time I actually try to sleep, it is trivial to do so, even though I had severe insomnia. It still works even if it is out of your system by then, and will not impact the quality of the sleep [I do not like the effects of it on my first few hours of sleep if I use it as a sedative], just its ease. Your other points seem reasonable and important to keep in mind. Unrelatedly, if you are overweight, that might be a cause of insomnia. I know my weight had a large effect in increasing my insomnia [due to lack of comfort and physical issues]. Losing it helped quite a bit, though I still need circadian shifting. edit: Removed an extraneous word and fixed a spelling error.
CoZE 2

Courage is not the absence of fear; courage is fear. To quote Alan Watts:

"To remain stable is to refrain from trying to separate yourself from a pain because you know that you cannot. Running away from fear is fear, fighting pain is pain, trying to be brave is being scared. If the mind is in pain, the mind is pain. The thinker has no other form than his thought. There is no escape."

Exposure therapy techniques are useful if there's something causing you more fear than it ought, but some level of fear is inevitable. Accepting the fear is the only way to conq... (read more)