How sleeping six times a day helped the WordPress founder create a $ 1 billion company

Content management platform WordPress, created by Matt Mullenwego is one of the most powerful systems in the world internet, because more than 19% of sites are running on it. But before the parent company Automattic took the path to the value of a billion dollars, Mullenweg was a simple enthusiastic programmer, with a thrust to the experiments on his lifestyle. Matt told about details that helped him achieve success and his polyphasic sleep scheme named Uberman.

“Polyphase” means only that a person sleeps not in one period of time, but several times a day (a popular Spanish siesta is a vivid example of such a sleep). We offer a brief description of this procedure.


Instead of only two cycles he slept six times a day (each time approximately 40 minutes), with a break of about 2.5 hours between each of the sleeps while creating WordPress.

“Maybe it was one of the most productive periods in my life. At that time, I was writing WordPress », – he said in an interview.

But this rhythm is hard to stick. If Mullenweg missed at least one of the six periods of sleep, he felt completely exhausted. Despite the difficulties, he would have continued to stick to such a slepp, if it was a bit more socially acceptable. He had to abandon the idea after he had got a girlfriend.

In the interview, he also told about other ways to improve efficiency. One of them is using another keyboard key layout known as Dvorak: almost all of the keys are arranged so that the mostly used letters were situated in a more comfortable position. This type of keyboard is easily turned on multiple devices.

Mullenweg is also a meditation fan (at least 5 minutes a day). Moreover, he became an investor for smartphone application called Calm, which helps users to meditate.

Mullenweg’s sleep scheme in comparison with other common schemes is as follows:


These are most common schemes of sleep, where the gray is the period of wakefulness, the blue is the period of sleep. Monophasic sleep is a dream in one (usually 8-hour) period per day. Biphasic – the main sleep for 5 hours plus a small break on a dream (about 90 minutes), Everyman – the main sleep for 3-4 hours plus a few small breaks for sleep (about 20 minutes), Dymaxion – the 30-minute break for sleep every 6 hours.  Uberman – is the one Mullenweg used.