Sound Sleep = Good Business

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If you’re like me, you have more than enough to think about during the day. When you’re not swamped with a multitude of work-related thoughts—most likely before you even reach the office and probably well after you leave—you’re probably also thinking about family, friends, and a range of personal and civic pursuits you’re involved in.

So when it comes time to finally get your rest, you certainly don’t want to be thinking about anything beyond some fat sheep jumping over a fence and maybe a feather pillow or two.

But ironically, just this week, a friend got me thinking about sleep itself—the quality of rejuvenation and how it impacts the way you function. She talked about the value of deep-sleep cycles, the problems with electronic distractions that adversely impact your rest, and other aspects of a seemingly simple practice I always assumed I did quite well enough.

And while my particular sleep habits are by no means the worst, I’ve decided to pay closer attention to some of the recommended best practices.

Limiting blue light exposure right before and during sleep time is one—be it a cell phone buzzing, nearby computer or a TV playing.

Another is leaving a cushion of restful non-electronic time between your sleep and last-minute work practices, like answering emails from your pillow.

In other words, going forward I’m striving to more fully compartmentalize my sleep in some fashion as I’m recognizing that—in and of itself—it’s an important part of my schedule.

For an entrepreneur, it seems counterintuitive to the traditional way we view work. We’re historically told to push our hardest at all times, to grind it out at all costs. Sleep is for the weak, or so the message goes.

But there’s something extremely enlightening in recognizing that working your so-called hardest at every moment may not really be in your best interest. Your ability to function and produce at the highest levels may better be served by looking at your life as a marathon and not a sprint.

Let’s face it. It’s rough out there. If you’re hoping to find success as an entrepreneur, you need a lot more than the capital to get started. You need focus and a range of personal qualities that have to be sharpened regularly in order to be effective.

Just recently I wrote about the value of harnessing sound intuitive judgment when it comes to some of your decision-making. A lack of sleep, or poor quality sleep, is going to adversely impact that ability.

The worst part is you may not even realize it’s being affected. That’s why it’s critical to do all you can to maintain your edge.

Maintaining myself at peak efficiency is simply wise management.