The modern world we live in is a stressful place. We are consistently linked to a rushing tide of information and are in continuous contact with our friends and business associates via our smartphones and computers. As an entrepreneur, it is even more challenging. You are responsible for the success of your baby and your personnel’s wellbeing. Any misstep could spell the end of your service or product. It’s no wonder entrepreneurs are always stressed out.
Getting enough quality ZZZ’s makes all the difference in life. Sleep is a natural do-gooder, and best of all it is practically free. We say ‘practically’ because in some cases you might have to invest in a few aids to help you fall asleep and sleep well.
But what are the benefits of a good night’s sleep anyway?
An interesting article was written on mattressmatchers.com blog which mentioned that sleep gives the immune system a boost, making you less likely to succumb to the common cold. It boosts the memory and improves concentration because the brain has time to recalibrate and realign those neurons. While we are at it, the right amount of shut-eye balances our emotional state, meaning fewer outbursts or unnecessarily shouting at people’s mistakes. But possibly the best attribute is that getting enough of it leads to a longer and less stressful life.
If sleep is so important, then why are so many entrepreneurs getting so little of it?
- In one word: TIME! It is the one major thing we do not have enough of. Time is finite, and it is something that cannot be bought or borrowed. In short, we live in a period of time famine. Knowing this, entrepreneurs try to cheat by skimping on sleep. They think that the twenty-four hours a day we have at our disposal can be stretched to the limit. To do this, business people sacrifice sleep. This choice leads to the beginning of a vicious cycle. Couple the aforementioned with a cognitive overload and we just cannot unwind and gradually sleep becomes less, and in time the lack of it make the situation worse still.
- Many men and women running their businesses are connected continuously. They don’t want to miss an opportunity or any information that is pertinent to their commercial activities. This level of connectivity often does not come to an end in the bedroom. The news might be playing on the TV while they are checking their emails on their smartphone, while at the same time, they are writing a last-minute report on their laptop. The light emitted by electronic devices screws up the circadian schedule, duping the body into thinking it is daylight. It results in difficulty falling asleep.
- Point three leads on from the previous fact. Entrepreneurs are often stressed because they do not get enough rest. Pair that with the things that worry them, it is a recipe for disaster. Come on, who can slip into standby mode when the brain is full of financial worries and the head is full of things to do the following day.
- Not getting enough exercise is another biggie. Often, entrepreneurs do not only skimp on sleep for time purposes, but they also consider the right amount of movement a waste of time. On the contrary, exercising the body clears the mind, but it also makes us tired. Ergo, get that workout to sleep better.
- Entrepreneurs like to think of themselves as flexible. And being adaptable to change is one of the recipes to business success – most of us can agree on that. However, the other side of the coin speaks a different story. Routine is sacrificed so that a last-minute meeting can be met late in the evening to the detriment of a fixed bedtime routine. Our bodies crave predictability and nowhere is this more important when it comes to quality sleep.
- We need coffee to stay functional and awake. Sure, maybe this is just the thing for you. ‘Everything in moderation even moderation itself.’ Too much coffee increases stress in most people, and that leads to difficulty falling asleep.
- Many entrepreneurs do not have healthy eating habits. Either they are indulging in too many business meals; the worst being the large dinner or they snack too much. For convenience purposes, a well-cooked meal is spurned in favor of a quick takeaway. On the other hand, out of fear of weight gain, many entrepreneurs don’t eat enough to compensate for the cognitive demands of their brain, leaving them hungry. Have you ever tried to fall asleep on an empty and grumbling stomach? It is difficult, to say the least.
Make sleep an integral part of your life. Plan for as if it were that all-important meeting. Limit caffeine (no coffee after 3 pm), eat healthily, get some regular exercise and for crying out loud refrain from turning the bedroom into an office. Within a week, you will realize what a favor you are doing yourself. And surprise, surprise, the myth that to be successful we need to sacrifice sleep for productivity will sound ridiculous because you are getting so much more done because you feel rested.
Bio: Hello, beautiful people! My name is James S. Ronoso, and my motto is: “Live the life you love. Love the life you live.” I adore nature and all the treasures it provides for us, and I am a firm advocate for both human and animal rights. I enjoy writing, especially about the bright side of life.