5 Fascinating Sleeping Routines from Around the World

We all love to sleep, and around the world, global traditions and cultures can enhance our nightly routines. The connection between lifestyles and cultural values is linked deeply to how people sleep everywhere. From Mexico to Australia, from cuddling to communal sleeping – there are benefits to these unique worldly sleep habits that just about anybody can learn from.

Mt. Fuji with fall colors in Japan.

Japan Takes Naps at Work

In Japan, honoring the company you work for is ingrained within its high-pressure culture. Japanese workers have been found to sleep the least out of everyone in the world, with an average of just 6 hours and 22 minutes a night. Perhaps that’s the reason Japanese culture promotes napping at work, a tradition called ‘inemuri’ which means “to be asleep while present.”


A view of Sydney Harbour Twilight

Australia Sleeps Together

For Australians, co-sleeping and cuddling is a common cultural quirk. In the aboriginal community, people choose to sleep together for protection and peace of mind. There’s often a row of mattresses in one area, with the children and vulnerable elderly in the center of the pile, and the stronger adults outside protecting the group. Co-sleeping reflects the Australian aboriginal values of gathering together for tasks like farming and hunting, and extends it to nightly snoozing.


GUANAJUATO, GUANAJUATO/MEXICO – FEBRUARY 19: Guanajuato World Heritage Site, historic city view of 16th century buildings and houses of vivid colors shown on February 19, 2010 in Guanajuato, Mexico.

Mexico Loves Hammocks Over Beds

Mexico loves hammocks, which in the Yucatan peninsula, mirrors how the siesta is important to Latin American culture. This tradition dates back to colonial times, where naps in the middle of the day were common. The easy, laidback nature of hammocks makes it easy to sleep anywhere and Mexico even prefers this to the traditional bed.


Chobe river in Botswana

Botswana Doesn’t Commit to a Sleep Schedule

Interestingly, some natives of Botswana view sleep as a fluid state, without restrictions on when they should sleep. As a modern hunter-gatherer tribe, the Kung sleep whenever they feel tired regardless of time of day. Unlike Western culture, in Botswana, sleep schedules can be irregular and scattered. While it may seem like this primitive system is chaotic to the body, it actually is a sure way to feel more well-rested and to reduce anxiety.


Pura Ulun Danu Bratan, Hindu temple on Bratan lake, Bali, Indonesia

Indonesia Practices Meditative Sleep

In Bali, Indonesia, people have been observed to practice a form of meditative sleep called “fear sleep” or “todoet poeles.” This means individuals can instantly fall asleep using cultural acquisition techniques in a stressful situation. Apparently, the Balinese exercise works to erase fear response to deadly obstacles or events in life. It helps ensure a calmer, Zen-like mind.


You might not be able to hop on a plane to Japan or Indonesia at the moment, but you can change the way you sleep – or rather, how well you sleep – with nothing more than a little bit of reBloom.

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